J.S.Z. ~ 30.091018
I believe I was kept at the Home longer than any other: I stayed there until I was 17 months old. Why I was never adopted out I will never know, but I stayed there in that nursery for nearly a year and a half; until my birth-family finally took me home.
The Salvation Army sent many letters asking for my family to come get me. One even said, “If (the child) is left here much longer, we fear she will be socially retarded.” Thankfully, that did not happen. On the contrary, I think I was given very good care.
When the event of ‘going home’ finally happened, instructions were to “be certain that (the child) has a glass of orange juice every day and takes her cod liver oil.” I have a small baby quilt some lovely woman made for me while I was there – it is the only thing I have of my time spent at WS, and I treasure it.
I returned to White Shield fifteen years ago. The place still haunts me. I have forced myself not to go back. I stood outside White Shield, looking up at the delivery room – I believe there were two – and thought of my mother, there all alone, no family or loved one with her, so frightened having a baby in her young life. My heart still breaks for her.
I have a letter written to my family just after I was taken home, saying how much ‘they’ missed (the child) in the nursery and how it seemed so empty without her, and how soon (the child) would forget all about them.
How not so! I will ‘remember’ as long as I live. I am so very grateful to be one of the White Shield children: they did so much for me.