For some reason as soon as I saw it I got emotional and had to fight back tears. Maybe it is because the way sweet Delia is sleeping reminds me of how Baby G sleeps. And maybe it is because I almost cannot stand the thought that Delia has to fall asleep alone. Maybe it is because she is sleeping on dirty sheets. Maybe it is because there isn't anyone to cover her up. Maybe it's because she doesn't have a favorite blankie to hold for comfort. Maybe it is because she doesn't have anyone to come pick her up when she wakes up from her nap. Whatever the reason, my heart is aching and heavy tonight.
Sometimes I feel like Alma when he wishes to be an angel to cry repentance (Alma 29), but this would be my cry instead: "O that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mine heart, that I might go forth to the corners of the earth where babies are lonely and pick them up, give them kisses, hold them close, and rock them to sleep. O that I were an angel and could take away their suffering, could ease their sorrows, and could bring them peace. O that I were an angel."
I remember feeling so sad at times when I was in the thick of all of the suffering in Romania. But I expected that. I knew I would see tragedy and I knew I would feel heartache. I also was IN Romania and I felt like I was doing something about it, which lifted my burden a little. I also believe that we were blessed with an endowment of peace in order to go about our work while we were there. What I didn't know was that the sorrow I felt there would never leave me-- that it, in fact, would be stronger at times after returning home. Even three years later (almost to the day) the heartache I feel every once in awhile catches me completely off guard. It can hit when there is a big snow storm, or when I am playing with my baby, or when I see a picture on my computer screen. The hardest part for me now is that there isn't much I can do about it.
Of course I can be rational about it, and I know that there are seasons in life. My two seasons in Romania have come and gone, and that was the Lord's plan for me. The season of my life now is to be a wife and mother. And I adore this season. I wouldn't trade being a wife to my dear husband or a mama to my sweet baby for anything else in the world, not even to be back in Romania. But that doesn't mean that I don't still ache to be able to do more to help. If anything, being in this new season and having my own family has only intensified my knowledge that I need to do more, that each of us has a sacred obligation to reach out in our own capacities and spheres of influence. And I guess that is the key, isn't it?
Sometimes I need a wake-up call like a picture of a sleeping orphan to remind me that, though I cannot be in Romania right now, I can and should be doing more right here in my own backyard. That is the way I can do my part right now, and that service is every bit as needed and valuable and life-changing as any other service I've ever done or will ever do. I'll do better if you'll do better, okay? Let's make a difference where we can. I think that would make Delia very happy.
Sweet dreams, baby girl.