In 2007, life was unbelievably happy for me. I was doing a lot of things many people thought I would never do, myself included. In March, I married a man I was deeply in love with and considered my best friend and was pregnant with his child. My mom was on cloud nine because we had both joked that I was a bonafide bachelorette; too fiercely independent to ever settle down. I gave birth to a baby girl in June of that same year. My mom who had worked two jobs for years, first to support her children, then herself in the increasingly bad economy, took time off from both to be at the hospital and then home with me and my eldest daughter. I did not know that in just a couple of months, she would lose her life in the same hospital where my daughter’s began.
When my mom passed away it shattered me, because as it is for most of us, my mother was my rock. When she died she took the best of my biological family with her. The remaining members have scattered to the winds and I was left with my husband and children. Her death seemed to begin an avalanche of trauma in my life and I have been in crisis of one type or another for the last several years. My marriage started to fall apart, and even though we shared the birth of another daughter, nothing could save what was badly wrong and we divorced two years ago. I have been a single mom with no family, long distance friends as I had to move for work, and my children receive minimal support.
We have had to eat in churches at times because, as a social worker, I’m told I make too much money to receive any assistance. I work two jobs which keeps us busy and besides the poverty, we are lonely. So many nights I’ve cried myself to sleep because I miss my mom. I’ve prayed for me and my girls to have friends and a family. They are as lonely as I am. My heart breaks all over again every time I have to tell them “no”. They are good girls… not spoiled at all and have appreciated used toys for Christmas. My 5-year-old has asked for a bike for the last two summers, but I just can’t afford it.
A little over a year ago we moved. An older couple across the street has been very kind to us. When our refrigerator went out they loaned us one of those dormed sized ones until we could get another. They do a lot of little things, like bring us potted flowers. It may seem small but it lifts our spirits, brightens our hearts, and makes the day worthwhile. We baked a cake and took it to them this week. I cry as I tell you this. The gruff old guy came to the door. He took the cake and told me they had something out back for the girls. In their garage, they had the cutest little bike for my 5-year-old and a huge doll house for my 8-year-old. It happened to be the 8-year-olds birthday, but he didn’t know that, I swear this to you. I broke down and cried in that garage.
Never underestimate the power of kindness or love. Jesus conquered sin with love and I FIRMLY believe God gives us beauty for our ashes. As for us, we can help one another with a smile, a hug… For me just knowing other people see us or hear us makes a tremendous difference. – Kimberly ?
UPDATE: We posted Kimberly’s story on facebook and asked if anyone would like to surprise her children with a letter or a card. There were several people who responded and asked for her address. I received an email today from Kimberly expressing her immense gratitude to these wonderful people.
Kimberly’s girls were sent a huge parcel from one lady in Orlando, Florida and an anonymous single mom sent a beautiful letter, card, and some cash for the girls to do something “fun before going back to school”. Kimberly said “I’ve sent some pictures of the girls enjoying the thoughtful, heartfelt generosity of two individuals who wrote to us.”
The single mom “shared her own story with me which had me in tears of hope and joy. In honor of her story I took my girls to Taco Bell with some of the money she sent them! A big hug to you my friend…I cannot thank you enough. There just are not the words.”