So, we finally were able to visit with our little M. The drive to Massachusetts really isn’t bad, but the trip up there was nerve wracking for sure. M lives in a group home and the closer and closer we got to the address, the more my stomach began to flutter. Some serious butterflies, i tell ya.
When we pulled in the driveway of what looked like a regular house, except it had a long driveway and the front yard was a parking lot. I noticed there were some tomato plants and squash growing in flower bed. I felt like I was going to puke, I was so nervous.
We had a little gift bag with some items we brought her; a book S had made online containing photos of our family and pets, some t-shirts from Long Island, and a little Long Island bracelet.
We knocked on the finger print/smudged glass screen door. We could see inside. There was a short hallway with hooks and cubicles splattered with jackets, shoes and backpacks. at the end of the short hallway was a dining table which we could see two little girls sitting with a female adult. “Come in” the lady shouted. We walked in and noticed to our right was a room which contained a TV on the wall and a couch. There were signs everywhere with lists and rules such as “Before you are allowed to use electronics you must have 20 minutes of exercise”.
We were directed through the kitchen past a sink of dishes and an overloaded garbage can and to another hallway. There we saw a big desk where a smiling young lady named Jamie sat. S was walking in front of me and I see her smile and say “HI!” in a maternal sing song voice. Then up walks M! Her arms out offering hugs to us both. Her first words were “Thank you for coming all this way for me! You are so sweet! Kate said you still wanted me even after you read my file”.
What do you say to that? What do you say to a 12 year old girl who thanks you for wanting her? My mind racing I said “Are you kidding sweetie? You are perfect for our family!” and I hugged her. She immediately had questions before we even left the group home. I don’t remember much, but I do recall the very first question she asked was our religion.
I let her sit in the front seat. Not sure why, but I just wanted to give her options. We had planned to go to a ceramic shop that lets you create, paint, and glaze little items. We found it online and thought it would be a good option. However, much to our disappointment it was closed. We went to chuck e cheese, which was probably a little over stimulating for all of us. A few hours in and she already told us she feels like she loved us. Confusing for me, but instinctively I wanted to love her back! Then to a movie and then to dinner. She ate way too much desert and she was way to hyper. We took her back to the group hope hyped up on sugar. Not very good parenting, but …I guess we just wanted to have a good day with her.
We spend the weekend in Ma, dropping M off and picking her up the following day for some shopping, which she thoroughly enjoyed. By the end of the weekend we felt like we new each other. We all agreed we had so much in common and we all felt like family already.