I was sixteen at the time, she was eight, small for her age due to a heart defect. In many ways though she was much older than eight, she suffered from a birth defect that severely affected her heart and even at the tender age of eight, she knew that if she did not get a transplant she would die. On her good days I would watch her play outside, moments of freedom, moments of childhood to rare for her, or she would come over and I would break out the dolls from when I was a child, she ended up taking some of them home, she fell in love with the one I loved the most as a child, she was tattered and torn but she would not allow me to throw the doll away, the doll was a symbol of love to her.
When she was well enough we would take her to Karaoke and she could belt out a version of Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You that would have probably made Whitney Houston herself a little envious.
At the time this young girl, this angel on earth was in my life I had not yet developed a personal relationship with Christ, but as I look back retrospectively I realized that every breathe she breathed, every time blood pumped through her veins It was a miracle.
It was my job to care for this little girl when her Mom was at work, or if her Mom was sick she stayed with me, because she could not risk getting sick. I was only sixteen but at sixteen her Mother felt that I was one of the most capable people to watch her daughter, and I really did enjoy the time I spent with this little girl.
Years have passed since those days, and last I heard the little girl had gotten her transplant, I saw her once again when she was thirteen, but after that I never saw her again, that does not mean I do not think about her, I often reflect on that little girl, who at eight taught me the meaning of faith and hope. Her laughter made me laugh, and her tears made me want to cry with her, but no matter what I always wanted to assure her that no matter what I was going to be there for her, and I like to think I was in those moments that she needed me the most.
Sometimes I find myself wondering where life has led her, she would be over twenty now, an adult, building a life for herself, but what is she doing? Wherever she is, whatever she is doing, I hope she carries that same strength and stamina that got her though the fight of her life.
Michelle R Kidwell