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Thoughts from a Child Sponsor (pt.5)

By Laura McCarley

March 17, 2021

Becoming family.
Beto and I had a fun, interesting relationship.
For 1, I spoke spanish. I’ll never forget the day he heard me speak English to a team member and asked me in spanish, “you know English?!” 🤣
For another, I was seemingly there ALL. THE. TIME. After officially choosing to sponsor him, I was there 3-4 times per year. Sometimes just for 5 days, but still, I was probably one of the most frequent visitors for a couple of years. He never once called me mama- because goodness knows he had enough of those- but he did absolutely run to me with pure joy (still looking for that pic- should be coming soon). He also knew that I was a rule follower and expected the same of him: if he was in need of discipline/consequences, I did not stomp my foot/get in the way/ask for special favors. I trusted the process.
Being there in March and/or may, July, and October for a couple of years really helped create a solid, special bond. It also helped that I started working that bond with a young young beto.
What has been so fun, though, is to see how our relationship ship has morphed. I was his ONE. He sat with me, wanted to play with me, couldn’t wait for our movie dates, etc.
But when JP and I started dating. Y’all. This whole place (Ciudad de Ángeles)- much like Glasgow- erupted with excitement. The whole place was dying to meet my man! The one good enough for “their Laura”. I’m telling you- this place and these mamas are special!
So, they’d all seen pictures. They all wanted the juice. All the details.
My all-time favorite story was when Beto came running out from his house to show me his newly buzzed hair. Oh, it was a funny sight! But then he said, “do you like it?” Goofy grin and all. That beto grin. I of course affirmed. “I cut it like my papá.” Then he got super timid/embarrassed and hid his face and hugged on me.
Now, all the men at the time were shaving their heads. But this moment to me felt like an ode to JP and I’m not sure I stopped crying that night!
From then, to watch beto welcome the girls and Landregan. It’s just miraculous. It’s so special to see him be the same smiling kid, but all grown up and well adjusted and welcoming to all the new parts of me.
I can’t wait to see what his next 10 years look like- it’ll be lots of big changes for him, and fewer big changes for me!
(Fb is jumbling the pictures, but Beto met JP at about the age Landregan is now. And I LOVED holding and sleeping Beto at nearly every dinner we took him to. Years later, Landregan would be the sleeper at all our events. Lastly, I love that he loves my family, but I also love that we still get time just the two of us. We’ve been together over a decade now!)