hopeful

‘Wen, we’d like to adopt you.’ My body was burned and abandoned on a doorstep. I was given a second chance at life.’: Burn survivor adopted from foster care system, ‘I’m so lucky to be alive and in a loving family!’

“It all started with a fire. My biological parents had bills to pay. They gave me up, knowing they may never see me again. A family reached out. I had no idea what adoption was. They didn’t look like me or talk like me. Why were they handing me gifts? Why were my foster parents crying? I didn’t know what was happening. How could I? I was only 6. Soon, I was taken away.  Little did I know that plane ride would change my life forever. I was halfway across the world.”

‘One more thing,’ she said. ‘What?’ the pastor replied. ‘I want to be buried with a fork in my hand.’ His eyes welled with tears.’: Woman shares life advice, reminds us ‘the best is yet to come’

“In all my years of attending socials and dinners, I always remember that when the main course was being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, ‘Keep your fork.’ It was my favorite part because I knew something better was coming, like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie. The next time you reach down for your fork let it remind you, the best is yet to come.”

‘I got a message on Facebook from our local fire chief. ‘You need to call us immediately.’ My heart stopped.’: Community rallies to help couple after shop destroyed by reckless driver

“‘He was going 90 mph. He hit the trailer, the shed, and drove through the entirety of the 40-foot building, and landed on your desk before fleeing.’ I shivered. If I wasn’t on vacation, I would have been right there, in that spot. ‘How can we survive this catastrophe?’ Soon, a couple stopped us. ‘We’re getting older. We’d like to give you something for free.’ I stopped. My breath hitched. I took a few moments to repeat the words in my head.”

‘I was so scared to tell anyone and ruin things. I felt I was losing my best friend to another girl who was thin. My life was spiraling.’: Gender fluid individual finds self-love after battling anorexia

“I was the wrong sex. I kept telling myself the more weight I lost, the better it would get. I just hadn’t lost enough yet. I spent my free time counting calories and thinking up convincing lies if anyone were to ask. I changed who I was before I knew who I was, and I lost any identity I had.”

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