perseverance

‘I am Retarded.’

“One of the staff members decided it would be beneficial for her to wear a medal around her neck that read this. She suggested the staff member wear a medal around HER neck that read, ‘I am Ordinary.’ She was a legend.”

‘My father would dress up for dates with other women as my mother cried, ‘Please stay. I’ll forgive you!’ He’d disappear weeks at a time.’: Woman overcomes ‘broken home,’ claims ‘the cycle of abuse can end with you!’

“His secret life became an open book. My mother would wake me at 3:00 a.m. on school nights to sneak my father’s phone from the bedroom. I’d translate endless emails he wrote to various women. He was unfaithful. She’d collapse at my knees and sob. One day, I walked into the office. I opened the filing cabinet and flipped to the very back. There, I uncovered a large yellow folder. My innocence was ripped away.”

‘My stepdad always told me I was bad luck. I never fit into his picture-perfect family. To avoid fights, I’d lose myself in a book or math problem. School was my safe-haven.’: Woman determines what the ‘American Dream’ means for her family

“I didn’t care what school I went to as long as I could get away from home. I later dropped out of high school and started working the night shift at a restaurant. Weeks later, my school counselor called. ‘If I work something out with you, would you agree to come back?’ It was my second chance at life.”

‘What are ya’ll doing here?’ She had a peculiar look on her face. ‘We have something to tell you.’ ‘If you’re pregnant or dropping out of school, you might as well leave now! GET OUT!’

“I heard the words ‘Oh crap!’ We shockingly stared at the pregnancy test. ‘What do I do?!,’ I asked. ‘You have to tell your mom.’ My mom was a ‘no nonsense’ woman. Everyone knew she was NOT to be played with. I had to tell her in public. We showed up, unannounced, at her job.”

‘We got THE CALL. ‘Would you be willing to accept a 3-month-old baby with serious medical needs?’ Our girl had endured more in those first 3 months than most do in a lifetime.’

“The thought of leaving her at school left me breathless. Would her teacher know what she needed? What if she was sad? Would she be scared? Made fun of by other kids for the ‘funny way’ she spoke? While our love and commitment to her never wavered for a second, it was earth shattering to hear.”

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