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Friday, July 21, 2006

Our Last Day... A Compelling Story...

While living on this homeless farm I have spent a lot of time talking to some of the current residents. I have found out some amazing stories and have decided, with their permissions of course, to blog some of these stories to share with the outside world. The stories will never be done justice by my poor writing and editing skills, but I hope I get the essence of what these people have experienced in their lives.

Most of the stories/interviews that I blog about will be mostly anonymous because of the sensitivity of the stories and people involved. I also can’t guarantee the stories are not embellished by the people I spoke to or that I might have missed something. I tried to get across the main parts of these amazing tails, and hope you gain as much as I did by talking to these amazing families.

The first person I spoke to was a 34 year old mother of two little girls, one 2 and one 5. Let’s call her Susan for the sake of this story. Susan was born as one of two twin girls in Maryland. Susan and her sister grew up less than an hour from this farm and remembered fondly the small town feelings of this area when they would come to visit.

Her life was blessed as her parents were both pretty well off and she was able to attend a private school growing up. They were into sports, loved reading, going to camp, playing in the band, and being one of the most popular cheerleaders in her High School. She grew very close to her sister as they became older and were connected at the hip.

The end of this fairytale ended early one cold December morning when her mother woke Susan up to tell her that her sister had committed suicide that night by taking a whole bottle of sleeping pills. By the time they had found her it was too late. The shock was amazing and tears slid down Susan’s face as she recounted that morning in vivid detail. It was easy to see this moment in her life was a turning point, and not for the better.

This shocking event it caused chaos and turmoil in the home immediately. It rocked Susan’s perfect world. From being a young cheerleader at her High School, and being one of the most popular kids, she went into a shell. She closed herself off to the whole world as she realized and reflected upon She finally decided to do what was best, tell her mother that her father had been molesting her and her sister since she was about 3 years old. What happened next should be no surprise to anyone.

Her father moved out immediately and her mom took Susan and moved into a new apartment. They sold the house they had owned and spent most of the profits on the divorce for custody and for what was left of their money. Susan told me that her parents had been living in a nice area and always had nice clothes and cars. The problem was they did not have much else. So once the divorced was final Susan and her mom had to move into a lower end apartment building to make sure they had money to live on.

Susan said she spent the next 10 years getting in trouble with the law and getting into every drug know to mankind. Her mom was a nurse at the local retirement home, but she drank heavily and Susan said her mom started to drink vodka during their morning breakfast. She divorced when she was 14 and she ended up going to live with her mom and her brother in Delaware. Her mother lost her job finally after jumping from job to job. This occurred around the time she was in High School and she started drinking with her friends.

Well, she spent the next 10 years drinking and doing drugs. She dropped out of High School and became a traveling gypsy. She would spend nights on any couch or bed she could find. She got pregnant from a guy she met at one of her stays in the local hospital.

She spent the next 30 minutes telling me the grueling stories about living in the woods in the middle of winter. How she would use her body to make money. How her daughter would sleep alone in a tent while her mommy was out trying to find food.

Susan and her kids finally ended up at this farm. Since then she has found a job in town and is going back to get her GED. Her kids are beautiful. The most inspiring part of this story is how much Susan wants to really live. She loves her children and says she wants to make their lives safe and she is driven by this thought everyday and night.

Susan is not unique, but her story is compelling and sad at the same time. I was moved talking to her. You can tell by hearing her passion and drive in her tone that she will succeed, no matter what it takes. Posted by Picasa

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