Can you even stand how adorable this face is? How much I wish Cordelia knew what a sweet girl she is and how much she is loved. Cordelia is still terrified. We are still at the beginning of Cordelia’s new beginning. By now I know this is how starts, this is how it is. I know progress starts out slowly, trust takes time, Cordelia has barely had time to decompress and stabilize.
The “right now” though is this – every time I enter the kitchen she cowers and looks away. Every time she does my heart breaks a little more for this timid little girl. She is begging for the Bad Things to be no more. She is afraid to believe they really are.
She really does WANT to be loved. She just can’t believe yet that she IS. I know this because if I approach slowly, carefully, without looking at her and lay down next to her she’ll let me. I can slip my hand under her chin, start rubbing her chest, scratching her ears and head. She’ll relax into it and eventually I’ll hear a really big sigh. If I stay that way long enough she’ll tumble off to sleep.
I watched her tonight as she slept and I wondered what her past life was like. Was she ever loved? Did she ever have a family that cherished her? Did she ever go for walks on sit on someone’s lap on the couch? Was she played with as a frisky pup? Where has her journey taken her? What has she seen along the way? I am sure I will never know. The truth is, wonder as I might, it doesn’t matter. What I do know is enough. What I do know is starting last Tuesday Cordelia is loved. Starting last Tuesday, Cordelia gets to start again.
I also know where to look for the little signs of encouragement and forward motion in the journey. Tonight, Cordelia learned that the bed is soft and warm and HERS. It took a little trust for her to let me put her gently in the bed and to sit there, at first tense and nervous, while I stroked her ears and head. I could feel her start to relax and I swear I could see the moment she gave in to the pleasure of being snug and cozy in the velvety goodness.
So today Cordelia learned that this good thing is all hers and she likes it. I’ll take that.