The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

Christmas Dawn

By Anonymous

Issue: December, 1991

Editor's Note: The loving foster mother wished to hide her identify to protect the privacy of the adopted child and family. She is an unsung heroine of the Blue Ridge. The meaning of the Christmas season is the very spirit of selfless love. This Christmas celebrate the true meaning of the holiday by searching out an unprivileged child in your hometown and share your love.

The telephone rang as I opened the door to go see the school Christmas program. My nephew was in it and I told him I would be there unless I broke a leg.

I recognized the voice of the lady at Social Services. I had been a foster parent for many years. "Would you like a baby for Christmas?" she asked. When? Tomorrow (December 21) and you may go with me to the hospital to get her.

I was so excited. A new baby in the house after eight years at Christmas-time. I was ready hours before the trip. It is something special to get a baby on a one day notice, something very few people experience.

Looking around the large nursery with all the strange equipment, I wondered which baby would be mine for awhile. The nurse handed me a tiny bundle and with tears in her eyes she said, "I'll miss you Dawn, but you will be home for Christmas. She has been here awhile and I have grown to love her."

I sat down in the rocking chair holding Dawn close. I listened as the doctor gave me instructions for her care, she was handicapped. "Will that make a difference, whether you keep her or not?" he asked. "No, I will learn to do all the things she needs," I answered.

Then I thought about what will she wear. The social worker must have read my mind as she answered, "We will stop and buy what she needs for a few days." Then I wondered if days were all we would have together.

"I'll need a special dress to take her to church in," I said and the social worker said, "That's fine." She was as much excitement at church as the program. When we got home from church, I whispered, "It's going to be a beautiful Christmas, Dawn. We will love you while you are here."

We had one more Christmas before she was adopted. I sometimes look at the tiny hospital gown and tiny little unscufled shoes and think of our Christmas Dawn.