Today when I was walking to school with my son, he was, as usual holding firmly onto my hand. He has a very strong grip which gives both him and I the feeling of safety.
And as we were walking, I just felt such a surge of love for this little kid who has come so far.
For the first 8 months after he came home there was no way that he would hold my hand - he would be running off and chasing and catching up with him I would grab his wrist and we would take a few paces and the would pull free and run off. I used to imagine that he spent hours in the little play room in Orphanage No. 13 and look out the window and think to himself, "If I ever get out of here I am going to run and run"!
But for me it was the moment that he voluntarily took my hand that I knew we had reached yet another milestone. He ran up and bumped into my leg and then pulled at my hand and grabbed it. My heart took a leap and I thought "Oh yes, hurrah". The moment was fleeting but from then on we began to hold hands more and more often until it is now just a natural thing.
But again it is fleeting. I am not sure how much longer he will be wanting to hold his mother's hand. I anticipate only a couple more months and then he'll feel too old to do it. So, every opportunity I can get I hold onto his strong, warm hands, I will.
And relish the moment, because it goes so quickly, they grow up so fast. And it is such a beautiful gift and such a wonderful symbol of bonding and love. We have much to be thankful for.