‘My little foursome survived a Category 5 hurricane and another one is headed our way. ‘Are we going to die? Who will come and save us?’: Mom reminds us that in the middle of the storm, ‘faith, hope, and love are the most important’

“I will go to the store and buy more water and canned goods. I will break out my evacuation bag and fill it with candles, flashlights, batteries, and rope so I can tie my children to me if the storm surge comes for us. Most importantly, I will pack my faith.”

‘Mommy, why was Charlie calling me Rich Boy?’ I want, more than anything, to give my children watermelon baskets.’: Mom teaches son ‘rich can mean many different things’

“The other day one of my son’s friends, who has been spending a lot of time at our house, called him ‘Rich Boy.’ At the time, my son really didn’t have much to say about it, but at bedtime something was on his mind that he needed help sorting out. ‘Mommy, why was Charlie calling me Rich Boy?’ ​I felt tears begin to sting my eyes and clenched my toes to will them back into place.”

‘Goodbye Jaci,’ I scream at the fragments of glass. ‘I can’t continue on this path. I must cut myself free of all of you, if I want to fly.’: Woman describes her rebirth, ‘I have found myself.’

“In a panic now, I pray. I put my hands up to my bloody mouth and pray long and hard and more fervently than I have ever prayed before. I can’t go back. I won’t. ‘Please help me.’ I will not look behind me anymore. There is no going back. I must break free from the cage I have held my self in for so long.”

‘You can offer him a better life than I can. Please. Take him,’ she begged. How can I fall in love with a child and then leave him behind?’: Woman takes in Haitian shoeshine boy, ‘I didn’t birth him, but he is mine’

“A man approached us. My Shoeshine Boy flinched. I saw money change hands. ‘Why did you do that?’ I asked. ‘For protection.’ His face crumpled. ‘He is with me,’ I boomed. Then Mama showed up at my door. ‘Even if it is only for a few months. Show him how to change his life.’ I felt her words like a slap in the face.”

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