The man that was my father walked out and left me, my mom and my little sister when I was four. Growing up, it was just the three of us and I was forced to be the man of the house. My mom was always working so it was my job to take care of myself and my little sister. My mom was everything to me.
She met a man, married him, then we moved to Texas. Shortly after my mom was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. She lived for 5 years after the diagnoses. This was an awful time for her and all of us. I lost my mom in 2007, my life became horrible after she passed.
My step dad was arrested in 2009 and went to prison. After that I dropped out of school and became homeless. I was totally on my own and didn’t have any help from anyone. I lived and did what I had to do to survive.
For two months I went from place to place, abandoned cars, abandoned houses, what ever I could find. Then I found temporary housing with friends’ families, but each was only a temporary solution. I got into drugs and drinking. With my life going nowhere, I joined job corps and received my GED. But I realized the trade that I was receiving was not for me. I became reacquainted with a grandma and grandpa and they said I could come and stay with them. It was there I decided to go back to high school.
Three years after my mom passing, I am back in school starting over again. It would have been impossible if it had not been for my mentor, Robert Bell. It was so hard but he stuck with me and never let me have excuses. He pushed me, but he believed in me. I am here today, a high school graduate, a college student, a job, a car paid off, 3 bed 2 bath house, an amazing beautiful fiancée, wonderful grandparents, a sister just now getting it together, all because people believed in me.
For me, the mentoring program that I was in, was one of the biggest parts of my life helping me work through all of my past, work through my struggles now and helping me figure out my future.