I love that saying "Be The Person You Needed When You Were Younger" Because as a kid you need so much. Raising a child is insane lol..it just is! It's HARD!!! You have no idea what you are in for until you are years deep in it. There are the highs and memories you know you’ll cherish forever, and the lows, the moments when you think,  "I may sell this one to the gypsies!" Sometimes your kids can be your best friend and literally the next day they are mysterious strangers and you have no idea what’s going on inside their heads. Raising my kids has been one of the hardest jobs I have ever had. My heart, soul, and every fiber of my being has gone into raising my children. teaching them, keeping them safe, loving them unconditionally, they are my greatest works of art, my most precious gifts. my pride and joy! Even to this day as I now have 3 young adults, you never stop worrying, you never stop bending over backward to ensure that whatever they need whether it be mental, physical, or financial that they have it. If you do not have a good foundation to go off of your house will crumble.  If a child starts the world in a negative the chances are slim to none that that child's foundation will ever be solid. Children with no foundation having children is just a vicious cycle and you end up with children homeless, parentless or taken away from a horrific situation to be placed in a broken system!

When I was a kid I lived in 9 different places by the time I was 21. 4 states, countless cities, and one foreign country. My sisters and I {shown left} were taken from abusive parents when I was 4 and placed into an abusive foster home. It was literally a lateral move! The system that was supposed to protect us failed me and my siblings time and time again! The adults that were in charge of our lives, supposedly looking out for our well-being, became our worst enemies. We were all abused very badly, multiple times by multiple people put in place by a system that was broken.  My siblings and I ended up being separated when I was 5 and didn't reconnect till I was in my early 20's. That picture left, was the last picture of us together.  For myself and most of my siblings, we made it out ok. We have wounds that will live with us always but we are masters at burying them deep! We have battle scars but also armor. We have bad memories but also value making better ones. And for me honestly, that scared little abused girl is long gone, she is another life. 

I have a beautiful family, a wonderful life that I wake up to every morning blessed and grateful. In an ironic way, I am the person I am because of my life. The lessons I've learned, and the battles I've won, made me the person I am. I value all that I experienced in my life and made peace with my past because without it I would never have the most beautiful people in my life today. My kids are my most precious gifts.  My husband is seriously my very best friend. I can not imagine my world without him.  I would not have any of them or the beautiful life I have now them if I were not me, but I also know that I am one of the lucky ones. 
 

There are approximately 440,000 children living in foster care in the United States TODAY! I always encourage people to adopt if they can find it in their heart of hearts to take on someone else's child and love them like their own. If that isn't quite an option for you and you still want to help, you can always mentor, And that's what I do.
I've mentored at-risk youth and I have mentored through Child Safe of Michigan.  I now mentor and focus one girl.  I see my chickee-poo once a week and we do all sorts of fun stuff. It gives her a chance to talk, vent, or just know that she can be herself. We cook, we shop, we create things, watch movies, go on trips and the most important thing drink lots of coffee!! I adore her foster parents, they are amazing human beings for adopting my mentee. And my mentee and her family have become my extended family. This year will be our 7th-year together.

I mentor because I know that was my "saving grace" growing up. I may not have had an" actual mentor" but I always was fortunate to have people around me, people who were kind, People who cared.  A Guitar teacher who was the best big brother when I needed it. A tutor who when out of her way to take me to special places and expand on myself as a person. A teacher who always asked me if I was ok, especially when I didn't look it and that her door was always open. Friends who gave me half of their lunch when I didn't have anything to eat. Special people who purchased a bus ticket for me so I can escape and start a new. A Person willing to allow me to live with them until I turned 18. I probably would have been lost if it wasn't for those little nudges, and big gifts of kindness.  Those special people in my life whether they realized it or not at the time made such a huge impact on me. And The Brady Bunch! I always thought the Brady Bunch was the best thing ever. I swore I  would make my kids lunch every morning just like Alice, and see my  kids off to school just like Mrs. Brady! that's exactly what I did!

Mentoring will give a Foster Child that little nudge that little guidance, and hopefully a start to a small stable foundation. You could be that Guitar teacher/ big brother and so much more. 

 
 

be the person you needed when you were younger

I volunteer for child safe of Michigan to learn more please see the website on your computer, there's too much info to fit in this little space, or visit Child Safe of Michigan 

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I have volunteered for a lot of places throughout my life. I met my mentee here though Child Safe Of Michigan and love being a mentor. I'm grateful for the opportunity. Giving back is not only important, I have always felt it's dutiful!! If you can you should! I am very fortunate I can. For more information about Child Safe, becoming a mentor or adoption click below

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