Today, Branch is 4 years old.
The call saying he’d arrived in the world came while I was shopping for books with my friend who would be his foster mother. We’d been expecting him. There was so much certainty surrounding his arrival. I felt sure that he would be mine. I saw this as my one and only chance to have a baby, though that wasn’t the reason I’d chosen him.
The uncontrollable facets of the foster care system prevented me from parenting him as an infant. It would be two years before he’d come to me.
But here he is – my Branch. A bundle of energy who can’t be contained in a photograph (getting him to sit still is impossible).
He strategically devises plans to get what he wants out of life. This is most often seen when he offers his brother an alternative toy so that he can gain the one Adley is using. Usually that goes off without a hitch since his brother is largely accommodating.
He’s considerate – asking me if I’m ok whenever I cause a commotion by dropping something in the kitchen.
He’s devoted to our newest addition. Perching beside the bassinet, he exclaims, “I want to look at the baby! Let me look at that cute baby!”
He has so much to say. A year ago, Branch could hardly string two words together. Now he’s talking a mile a minute. There’s so much he wants to share with everyone. So many instructions he feels compelled to give. He’s a natural leader (or dictator depending on the lens you’re using lol).
Less than a month into school, Branch has already gained a best friend. My worries were needless. He’s adjusting well to the classroom routine and learning along with the other children. His backpack is nearly as big as he is (but he really wanted one just like what his brother and sisters were getting) and his little legs struggle to climb up the steps onto the school bus yet Branch is eager to go each day and comes home excited.
He’s creative and imaginative. Given a box or stick, Branch can easily occupy himself or draw his brother into a game of make-believe.
This 4th year is bound to be full of excitement and expansion for Branch. I love watching him grow.