Her love language is drawing for us. I was basically this many years old when I realized this. We don’t get many spoken “I LOVE YOU’s” and hugs, and when we cycle through HARD times in our relationship, she often apologizes and repairs by leaving us drawings by our bed.
She had many broken relationships, severed attachments, and traumatic events before joining our family. She has worked hard to protect herself from the fear, the pain, the hard, the loss, sorrow, and the worry.
She doesn’t want to feel those feelings (who does??!?!). But by shutting those off, she also has shut off joy, happiness, glee, peace, and excitement.
If we have too many good days in a row, she pushes back. She rejects my comfort and love. She ignores me. It’s like a switch, but it is her way of surviving, of protecting.
So when there is a note on my pillow, or a drawing like this on my bathroom mirror, my heart swells with hope. Forgiveness. Love.
We are both learning to love each other right where we are. We are both learning to trust the happiness and however many good days in a row we have together. We are both teaching each other about grace and connection.
This is harder than anything I have done in my life.
Thank goodness for this village that supports us and understands us.
(The picture she drew opens from the small folded rose and heart to the larger image of multiple roses and hearts.)