The first year Rabbit was here was hard.
I mean HARD.
I can't even explain the things we went through.
We were all tested.
Rabbit needed a lot from us. Mostly consistency.
He needed to be able to test us, push us to the limit and know that we would still be there.
And he did test us. And somehow, we made it through and we are still here, and so is he.
The last few months have been amazing. He is finally really trusting us. Trusting that we will always keep him here. That he will always be part of our family.
A year ago he wouldn't even refer to us as his foster family. At best we were his "placement". At worst we were "those white people".
Now, while he still isn't ready to call me Mom, he does refer to me to people outside of the house as his foster mom, and to CJ and Mark he refers to me as Mom. As in, "Uh, oh. Mom's gonna be mad when she sees you eating her m&ms".
The last few weeks he even started saying I love you. As in "I love you Miss Della. But only when you do things I like". Which is a safe way for him to say words that are kind of scary to him.
But it still is a huge, tremendous thing.
I know we have accomplished something amazing. I know our family has grown in amazing ways since Rabbit became part of it.
I know God brought Rabbit to us because he knew that somehow we would be able to help him, and that through our help, and God helping us, we could give Rabbit something he never had before, and maybe opportunities for the future that he wouldn't have had otherwise.
But today something happened that meant even more.
I had a meeting at Rabbit's school. I met with his teachers, and some of the school personnel. It was a standard review meeting, but was awesome. We talked about how great he is doing. How much progress he has made and how far he has come. How he is a different kid.
One of the teachers, a great guy named Graham, has known Rabbit for years, even since before he came to us. Graham said that a year ago he never would have guessed we would have such a positive meeting about Rabbit.
At the end of the meeting he offered to walk me out. When we got to the door Graham offered me his hand. I took it, and he told me "Thank you for saving this kid's life".