My name is Brittany. My mother is a resident at Our Saviour’s Housing.
I am 30-years-old and the mother of two beautiful boys, ages three and five. I am also a recovering drug addict and have been clean of all substances for almost a year. I go to college full-time in hopes of one day becoming a licensed drug and alcohol counselor.
Throughout my struggles, my mother has never given up on me. But in my active addiction, I put a lot of stress on my family. I shut out the people who love me most.
After I finally got through treatment, I saw my mother for the first time in months. She cried when she saw how healthy I looked. This moment is my new favorite memory of my mom – the love pouring out of her and her joy at seeing me with a genuine smile on my face.
It was only then that I learned how bad things had gotten for my mother. I found out that she was homeless and staying at a shelter in Minneapolis. I was terrified. Being from a much smaller area, it scared me so much that she was staying in a shelter by herself in a big city. I couldn’t imagine how a woman of her size would be able to defend herself. I was in no position to help because I was relearning how to take care of myself and had no job. I just visited every chance I could.
When my mother moved into her new place, my family and I drove down from Brainerd to see it and celebrate my mom’s and my son’s birthdays. It was the first time my mom had seen her grandchildren in 19 months. Having a home to visit, somewhere to let my kids run around, was amazing.
I don’t think there are words to describe how happy I am that my mom has a place to call her own. Because of my own mistakes, I was not able to help her. But I am so grateful that someone else could. She has somewhere warm and safe to be. I love hearing about the events and activities she goes to through the program. I no longer lose any sleep worrying about my mom being out somewhere alone, and I can focus my attention on maintaining stability for myself and my children.
I am looking forward to spending Mother’s Day with my mom this year. Now I can come down the day before and spend the night. I want to take her out for a girl’s day: manicure, coffee, lunch, and maybe a walk in the park. It would be the first time in a long time that we could truly enjoy each other’s company without an outside worry weighing down the mood.
To everyone who makes it possible for my mom and others like her to have a home, thank you. You didn’t just change her life, which would have been enough. You also changed my life and my sons’ lives. I am so grateful.