Escaping Abuse

teenager smiling

2016 was the year that really changed me as a person. I graduated high school the year before in 2015, then a week after graduating I was kicked out to live on my own at 17. During this time, I was seeing a person where all the red flags just looked like flags to me, for the depths of my love were endless at this age due to the ignorance and wishful thinking I had. The relationship escalated into being an abusive one and then I found out I was pregnant. My former partner and I did originally try to make it work and keep the baby. However, abusive relationships are always the same; it’s like cloud 9 when it’s good, but when the bad comes it’ll hit you like a train and you’re left feeling worthless. I knew my worth, and above all – the worth of my unborn child.

‘I realized the last time he laid his hands on me was when I was in my second trimester, and I thought to myself, “this is not the life I’m going to have my child live.” Therefore, I started to look on the internet for adoption agencies shortly after I left the relationship. I remember the day I walked into the adoption agency, it was like walking into the arms of God because of how welcoming they were.

I was very eager to look at adoption booklets right away, however they told me that it was going to take a while for me to be able to actually pick out a family. The day that it finally came, I knew the moment I picked up one couples particular booklet, that this was going to be my child’s family. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the overwhelming peace I felt throughout my mind and soul when I read through their booklet and saw a glimpse of the life my daughter could have. Not only were they a perfect fit, but I also looked at their life and their happiness and saw a reflection of what could be in store for me as well in the future.

Placing a baby for adoption changed me in a lot of ways. It gave me goals and above all, it gave me hope. I wouldn’t have been able to be where I am at today if it wasn’t for my daughter and her family. Not only did they leave such an impact on me, but they inspired me. Here I am, years later – I cut off all the toxic people I had previously in my life, I am a mom myself to my 2-year-old son, I’ve been in a stable and healthy relationship for years now and now in full time college with endless possibilities in store for me. Furthermore, I see the smile on my daughter’s face to this day along with the happiness that radiates off of them, and I can proudly say I have no regrets when it comes to the adoption. Placing my daughter for adoption was my drive to do better not only so she can look at me and be proud, but so I can look at myself and be proud. I saw what I was capable of when I placed my daughter for adoption therefore the inner strength only grew stronger from there. I am not the scared and alone person that I was when I walked into the adoption agency that day, covered in bruises and devoid of hope. I am stronger now and placing my daughter for adoption was only the beginning for the journey that life had in store for me.

The biggest challenge I’ve faced is finding support. Due to situation I was in previously, I don’t have many family or friends to go to support while being a stay at home mother on top of it. I keep pushing because not only would this education benefit me, but it would also benefit my family as a means to be able better support ourselves and not feel financially stuck.

My education is important to me to further achieve these goals and continue thriving. I will be a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer by the end of this year. I will also come out of it with my Associates of Applied Science in Funeral service. I truly see endless possibilities in sight; therefore, I believe this scholarship would make a difference in the sense that I can focus more on my studies and be able to better serve the families in which I intend to throughout my career. The hardships I previously faced opened the doors for me to achieve greatness therefore I will not let anything get in the way of that and I believe that this scholarship will not only make a difference in my life and education, but also make a difference in the lives that I will touch as well.

– 2022 Scholarship Recipient