I grew up in what you might call a group home. It wasn’t exactly an orphanage. There were lots of kids and lots of moms who weren’t moms looking after us. No one belonged to anyone else, we were all just there together. Some would come and stay for a little while, some would go and never come back. It was kind of scary but it was kind of exciting.
There were always lots of colors, so much that tit kind of hurt my eyes some days. Lots of lights and glitter. It was like Wonderland.
Sometimes, I needed a break from it all. Those were the days I asked for Mother Mary. She didn’t come around very often and, unlike the other non-moms, she wore simple colors of black and white and she shimmered like an angel. She was quiet, like me, with a soft smile. She looked sad sometimes when she looked at me but it still made me happy, our eyes matched. I didn’t match with anybody else in Wonderland.
On special days, or bad days, if I asked for her, one of the non-moms would try to bring her to see me.
On my birthday, I drew her a picture. I love to draw and last year she brought me pretty pencils. I hide them from the other kids so they don’t get broken. So this year, for my birthday, I drew Mother Mary a special picture of me and her. It wasn’t flashy like Wonderland, I didn’t use any glitter or gems. Sometimes, we like to be plain, to be who we are under all the colors and sparkles. So, I drew us like we are with matching eyes.
I thought I’d done it wrong when I gave it to Mother Mary because it made her cry. I didn’t mean to make her cry. It made me cry, too. I told her I was sorry for hurting her feelings but instead of being cross she smiled and hugged me.
She said I hadn’t hurt her feelings at all, but had really made mother very happy.