When Matthew & Nikki first asked me about being able to watch Eli I prayed about it and talked with Brandon and really took my time in giving them an answer. I prayed that God give me the love for him that I have for my own children and He did. He answered my prayers tenfold. I can honestly say that I love Elijah with as much fervor as I do Madelyn and Nolan. He's my little buddy. We have a special relationship that I can't really describe. I am his auntie. I'm his "Awa".
What I didn't pray for and probably should have, was that when the time was right, and it was time to move on from being his caregiver, that I would be able to let go and not feel the hurt that I feel right now. It's probably totally unhealthy to be mourning the loss of a little boy who is perfectly fine, is being well cared for by his new nanny, that I WILL see quite often, and whose parents we are extremely close with. But he brought me such absolute joy and loved me as much as I loved him that my heart is breaking because I will no longer be the one to care for him, to see his glowing little face every Wednesday and Thursday morning.
I know this whole thing may sound totally irrational, especially considering that I am now able to work in Madelyn & Nolan's classrooms every week, go on field trips, and take time to bond with our son when he comes home. It doesn't stop my heart from hurting. I expect it will take a long time to mend.