*we are the lucky ones*

You know when you come back from a foreign land, and you have that country’s language swirling around in your head for a couple days (even if you don’t happen to speak their tongue or understand one lick)? Well, right now I have the little voices of wee ones (my cousin’s four adorable kiddos, to be exact) echoing in my head, and I miss them so—their sticky fingers and high-pitched, silly cadences and innocent questions and infuriating, illogical tantrums and soft hands that curl around yours in those tender, break-through moments when they decide that, even though you’re not mom or dad or nanny Laura, you’re worthy of their love, too. (I will choose to set aside the comically ridiculous comments like “You’re never gonna be my best friend” and “Just go back at your home; I don’t even care!” in lieu of the precious times they care to ask, “Mommy, how much longer is your cousin staying with us?”)

There’s something really tough going on in these sweet little ones’ lives right now, and you wonder how much of it they grasp. You want to shield those innocent, big brown eyes from all the world’s bad, to protect them from ever understanding the cruelties life sometimes throws our way. But the thing is, at times like this, you can’t even protect yourself from the unfairness of it all. And so for their sake—and for yours—you trust it will all be fine. Because it has to be. There is no alternative.

These are the precious, exhausting, wonderful little dudes I spent the last week with:)

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