Then children were brought to him that he might lay his hands on them and pray. The disciples rebuked the people, but Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.” And he laid his hands on them and went away. Matthew 19:13-15 (ESV)
Who knew how exhausting it could be to take care of twenty babies that weigh less than twenty pounds? Even with four or five of us in the room, I am worn out today. The babies have gone from being little lumps to me to each having their own name and personality. There is Kimberly, who is the biggest of the bunch and is just about ready to move up to the Bunnies. She can almost walk and is big enough to take the bottles from the other children. If you give her one of the smaller bottles to drink, she will throw it across the room and pitch a fit until you give her a bigger bottle. She loves to stand up and hold onto things. She also loves to explore. Usually, we can find her trying to get out the gate or sneak behind the curtain into the bathroom. Luis Armando is loves to smile. He is almost big enough to crawl and eats everything you put in front of him. He is quite content to sit in the exersaucer and watch all the commotion around him. Irma has a genetic disorder similar to dwarfism. She is fascinated with her hands and will show you her fingers whenever you come to play with her. She still cannot sit up alone, but likes looking at herself in the mirror. Manual wants to be held all the time and will cry and cry if you set him down. He does not like other children coming near whoever he has attached himself to. But, he is sweet and happy when he is being held. Ana is four months old and only weighs four pounds, but she can guzzle down two bottles in one sitting if you let her. She has a tiny cry when she is unhappy, but when she is content, she will stare into your face like she is memorizing it. Jose David does not like to take a bottle. He shuts his mouth tight and will not let you put the nipple in his mouth. While I did get him to take half a bottle by squirting it into his mouth, soon, he learned if he put his hand in front of his mouth so it squirted back at me. Which he thought was pretty funny. He loves the ball and will chase if around the room. Josue Daniel (my favorite) is so happy and smiles all the time. He likes to be held or put in the baby carrier and rocked. Marvin is mischievous and can scoot himself forward on his belly. He is a giggler and very charming. Then, there are Dana and Brian, two new arrivals, who are still malnourished and as a result unresponsive to stimulation. They sit quietly with blank expressions on their faces and do not interact with anyone. Neither cares much to be touched. We have gotten Brian to laugh a few times by lifting him high in the air, and today, he held a ball for the first time, but for the most part, they just sit there as their body tries so hard to get healthy. As hard as it has been to see their little scrawny limbs and lose wrinkled skin, I know that Brian, Dana and all the others are in the best place they can be for now. And as exhausted as I am, I am blessed to be a tiny part of their healing process.