“Come on momma- pull it together, your baby wants you.”

The little girl we are fostering loves the bath. Every evening after dinner she toddles into the bathroom. I get her all set up and while she splashes around I sit on the floor near the tub and read.

Tonight I had a handful of Easter egg candies I was eating while reading. At some point I felt a warm little hand touch the side of my face and ask, “num-num?”.

She’s a smart little girl. It’s not always the case, but we’ve been rooting for her birth mom to get it together. It’s evident that she’d spent a lot of time with her – at less than two years old she knows all her colors, body parts, names of common things and asks for what she wants.

I bit one of the chocolate eggs in half and stuck the other half in her mouth. Her eyes got wide and she splashed and squealed. A minute later the little hand came back with, “num-num?”.

“No more baby girl, is it time to get out?”

She plopped abruptly back down in water and shook her head very seriously, “No!…Momma? Momma?”

She asks for her momma a lot. Bath time always brings up the topic of her missing parent. She has not let Kaety take the momma role. It’s usually Kaety who is the primary safe harbor for our little fosters. For a lot of these kids men are source violence and fear – so I’m used to being viewed with suspicion and held at a distance. In this case though I am the bomb! She is all daddy all the time.

She reached out again and patted my face. I grabbed her hand, kissed it and pulled the towel down off the rack, “Time to get out!” She laughed at the kisses and hung on to me as I wrapped her up in the towel. She looked at me again and asked, “Momma?”.

I carried her in to get jammies on and answered her, “Momma’s not here right now baby”.

I wrestled her into her jammies and laid her down in the crib. She patted the side of her face – her way of asking that I rub her head. I turned off the light and rubbed her head while she settled down.

I whispered “goodnight” as I closed the door and thought, “Come on momma- pull it together, your baby wants you.”

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