Learn to Love When You are Loved

Training time is approaching and I am busy with my material preparation.

A mother, Mrs Li from Family Village knocked my office. “Weiling, could you please come over? My daughter Ying wants you to see her boyfriend.” I turned around but saw Ying and a skinny boy beside her. They are standing there, a little nervous, but I could still tell that they two are very close and intimate.

Ying is a nineteen-year old girl. Before the age of 11, she could not figure out how many nannies, teachers and caregivers have nurtured her. When she was turned into a preschooler, she said goodbye to group life but was transferred to different foster families in the institutions. Finally in 2006, she came to her mother Mrs Li, and joined the Family Village.

When she entered the family, Mrs Li found it difficult to deal with Ying. Ying was irritable, bad-tempered and had many bad habits. She used to be rowdy girl and always said something opposite to her mother. She fought for food with her siblings and all the younger sisters and brothers were afraid of her. She yelled at people once something went against her. The most terrified disaster was, to her mother, that Ying often stole her mother’s money and bought something nice for her classmates.

Both FV mentor and Ying’s mother were anxious about Ying’s abnormal behavior. But at the same time, the mother was well-trained that she knew she had to be very patient to adolescents. They started from establishing mutual trust with Ying, then they let her know her family will be always the warm haven for her. They tried to influence her behavior via family love. Their goal was to let herself change when seeing and learning school rules, family rules and social regulations.

Gradually, with a family where she can be stably bounded and relied on, with her foster parents’ love, she felt the warmth her family gave her. A familial bond was established and she got to know her mother paid a lot effort on this family and she is capable of loving people and trying to understand them. Her bad temper and tendency for violence was gone magically. She loves and cares her siblings by her own way. Interestingly, she became friends with her mother. She keeps no secret from her. One day, she said, “Mom, I want to go out for making money, I want to be like my older sister (Mrs Li’s real daughter) to live on my own and buy good things for you.” “Mom, you can count on me when you are old, because you saved my life, and gave me another birth, I want to treat you well when you are old.” She added. Ying is not a straight A student at school, so after finishing Junior High, she insisted to get a job and make a living on her own. “I need to redound to my mother!”

The biggest risk that a person is going through his/her life is self-development. For Ying, she is lucky because she had an ever-lasting family that provides her with love in the most important stage of her life. Family love and care smoothes her and make her calm down. She, step by step, got out of the state of chaos but marched into a new phase of growth. She becomes more intellectual, sensible and sober. She is clearer of the life she wants.

Perhaps, she savored the pleasure and love that a family gives her, or her ability of loving people is awakened, or she was born to be wild, or perhaps she understands this family does not belong to her eternally, or she wants to be a mom herself someday, there are more maybes that we don’t know, and Ying found a job very soon, and fell in love with a boy who also loves her very much. She applied to the institution that she will marry her boyfriend Ping when she turns 20 years old.

Ying’s mom is a little nervous because she is afraid the boy is not serious or what if Ying gets hurt in this romance. She got other staff to talk to the boy and finally found he really loves Ying and is planning their future with Ying. Ping was born in a poor family and a little disabled but everyone can tell that he treats Ying very well and cares her very much. I also could see this young man is trustworthy and honest by talking to him. That’s why they also want me to “interview” this boy to see whether he is reliable.

Ying’s life is full of surprises and unknowns, but people all understand that her desire for her unknown future and her desire for love. We are all pretty sure that she will never forget her siblings in the foster family since they are her dear ones. In this family, she gets love, learns to love, understand love, and love people.

Ying’s story gives me a picture in my mind: a teenage girl, with an unkempt hair, odd behavior, and bad language, walked into a house, but when she came out from the door, she finished her gorgeous transformation. A cultivated girl, with beautiful long hair, tender eyes, and proper behavior came out from the door.

This house is FAMILY.

Bless Ying! Hope she will have a bright future.