Tuesday, January 08, 2008

morning has broken (pt. 4)

I headed back to the site yesterday morning and immediately spotted the mom, sitting up and looking okay. Apparently she was in some sort of distress related to the stressful conditions she's been living with but she and the baby were okay and they sent her back. I speculate as to whether she'd have been released had she had insurance but perhaps all was simply okay. Relieved, we turned to the task at hand, finding a better place for them to live. I had placed a few calls over the weekend and one of them called back a little while later, offering an interview and if they were accepted, a room. A room that others desperately needed too, this family was not the only one. The woman on the other end made a point of explaining that but also listened to their story, the difficult conditions, the baby, the little girl. There was less surprise than compassion, for them or for my pleading, I'd take either one if it helped.

She told me they needed to arrive in a couple hours, if they were late they'd miss their chance and they'd go to the next in line. I frantically called till I found them and knowing the bus was a tricky option for folks who didn't know their way around, negotiated a ride. The beauty of that was the folks who stepped up, a couple of old timers volunteered their battered cars to transport them, one with the family and one with their belongings, a jalopy caravan of strangers meandering across town.

I got a call just after the scheduled time, the woman who set the appointment called to let me know they arrived and then her boss, the one I'd appealed to earlier called me back to let me know they'd been accepted and brought into the warmth of their program with a spanish speaking counselor and an open day care slot for the little girl. Mom needs to rest awhile, we'll take care of her the woman said and I could tell this family moved her as they'd moved me, the simple essence of their need spoke volumes. I gave an inappropriate Whoohoo! Hell Yes Thank you! to a peer that I've mostly sat across from in community meetings, woeing the state of funding and yet for a moment we shared some of the juice, the reason we both are here. That little girl didn't need to be sleeping beside all your bums, she said, hey now, woman, I replied and she laughed and we hung up smiling.

So it's over for us but not for them, their journey is far from done but in our business small victories mean a lot. When I picked M up last night she wanted to go see her new friend but I told her she was gone. Why, she whined, I wanted to play with her again. I remind her this is good news, they are in a better place now and she says that's good mommy, that's good.

48 comments:

Her Grace said...

Awesome! What a lift! I couldn't help but wonder what would happen if she was having that baby yesterday, but now it sounds as if she's in good hands.

Candy said...

I really don't know what to say. Your stories of everyday kindnesses leave me speechless. You must feel like an angel, sometimes.

thailandchani said...

Great! I was hoping you'd post an update about this. :)

Sober Briquette said...

Oh, Jen, I'm glad you had a smile.

And ever so relieved that she didn't have the baby yesterday.

gumdropsandbubblethoughts said...

What a great news! I am so happy for them and for you as well..

wheelsonthebus said...

I want to cry with relief. But then I think -- there is so much more for them to face.

Deezee said...

simple words to utter but 'good work.'

kristen said...

this is good news, now i'm going to go cry a little.

Oh, The Joys said...

Keep on fighting the good fight, my friend.

xo.
J

Suz said...

This is easily, easily, the best news that I've heard all day.

ms chica said...

Again, your passion makes the difference. THis is why we have to keep fighting.

Well done!

Wayfarer Scientista said...

Wonderful news! Good work woman!

QT said...

Ack - I've got a lump in my throat. I am so glad this turned out the way it did, all the moving parts came together, and you, as always, going above and beyond.

Bon said...

kicking ass, indeed. a little reprieve, a small victory...i believe that's what matters, for all of us, Jen.

you do good. you did good.

...now keep doing, i suppose, my friend.

slouching mom said...

contented sigh. that's wonderful news. or, as M said,

that's good.

andrea_frets said...

You do kick ass! I'm so glad they are moving in the right direction.

Magpie said...

that is good.

will you, can you, keep tabs on her?

Jenty said...

That's fantastic news!! I'm so glad you found them somewhere safe to stay!

Jenty said...

Oh, and I have to add... your daughter is one special little girl :)

Kyla said...

So pleased. It is a long road, but at least they have this small step behind them.

Christine said...

oh that is good! very, very god.

Running on empty

Jennifer said...

High five, miracle worker!

flutter said...

that's more than good.

Tabba said...

i know this is far from over. but i want to celebrate anyway! i know there are more hills for them to climb, but i'm so relieved to know they are in such good hands out there in the wild west.
again, i am thinking of them and holding them close.

Amy Y said...

Oh, thank goodness for this small victory. Here's to it being the first in a long line of small victories for these folks!

Gwen said...

Happy for you, and for them.

painted maypole said...

that is good, mommy, very good

mamatulip said...

Very good indeed.

Omaha Mama said...

You ARE kicking ass!

cce said...

That's not only good, that's the best!
I saw this quote today and thought of you...
"If you're really listening, if you're awake to the poignant beauty of the world, your heart breaks regularly. -Andrew Harvey

Beck said...

I feel like I almost could not have stood it if this story didn't have a happy ending.

Pgoodness said...

Thanks for sharing this and the happy middle (as it's obviously not an ending in their long road ahead). You sure make it better for a lot of people.

Aliki2006 said...

I was worried to think she might have delivered that baby too early...I'm so relieved you've given us the window through which to look into this woman's life--to hope for her, to reach out and pull from her own strength.

Mrs. Chicky said...

That's wonderful news. I hope this is just the beginning of the good fortune that should be coming their way.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

This is the ending I was hoping for. Sometimes there really is room at the inn.

Thank you for sharing this story. There are so many, but some of them do touch our hearts more than others.

Redneck Mommy said...

That is the best news I've heard all day.

Thank you.

fiwa said...

That's great to hear, I thought yesterday that she'd get separated from her husband and no one would be able to find her. It's amazing all the things you take for granted, like the ability to reach your loved ones instantly by a number of different means of communication.

The Expatriate Chef said...

I'm thinking there might be about a hundred little girls (or boys) named Jen, after you, by the time your career there ends. :)

Marymurtz said...

God bless you, Jen. That's all I can say. These folks, and all the folks there, are in my prayers every day.

deb said...

That's a very good thing.

bgirl said...

wahoo! hell yes indeed.
nice work sister, very nice.

collectingtokens said...

I am so relieved. At least for now they are safe and together. And sheltered in relative comfort and privacy.

It's so scary to think how easily things could have gone the other way, especially without your help, and the help from others. And how things go badly for so many others who can't get the help they need.

alejna

hele said...

So impressed, I am crying

Family Adventure said...

A big victory, Jen.

Heidi

Jocelyn said...

We can't completely call this a happy ending, but it's a step down the Happy Path.

Well done.

Btw, I just nominated you for Best Community Blog at: http://2008.bloggies.com/

Lawyer Mama said...

That's FABULOUS news, Jen! I guess this is how you can get through the bad stuff, huh? Knowing that sometimes you can really help make a difference.

Hetha said...

That's wonderful news jen. Thanks for sharing this incredibly moving story with us.

Tis I. said...

Thank God they keep Moms and Babes together, nowadays. When I was young, they took the children to 'homes'. I can't tell you, without any psych help for the children, without any advocacy or aid or help or support for the children, what that did.

I'd rather, even now, as an adult, knowing what I know now, I'd rather be homeless with my mother, than in a home without.

In your position, I know you've had to make some tough decisions - the girl who thought her child was Christ - but, if you can keep them together - you will save a child hell on earth, because a life without one's mother, isn't a life at all.