Saturday, January 22, 2011


At 23 years old, I moved to Baton Rouge, Louisiana to take a job as a Residential Counselor for Boys Hope Girls Hope. BHGH helps academically capable and motivated children-in-need to meet their full potential and become men and women for others by providing value-centered, family-like homes, opportunities and education through college.

For 2 1/2 years I lived in a house with 6 boys (sometimes 8) (ages 11-18) and two other counselors. It was the hardest yet most fulfilling job of my life. I miss the boys terribly, and thanks to facebook, I've reconnected with all of them (they are all grown up!)

David (DT) was one of those boys. David is an amazing kid. Highly intelligent, beautifully creative, unbelievably athletic, ridiculously funny, and fiercely motivated. Yet David's formative years were shaped by unimaginable challenges, and at 13 years old, David was often angry. My memories of David span from pee-your-pants hilarious to painfully heartbreaking. David has come a LONG way. He is now a pre-med student at Rhodes College (on a FULL academic scholarship), playing football and working as an RA. Can you see me beaming with pride?

Recently David blessed my family by visiting us for a week during his Christmas break. We had an absolute blast, and it broke my heart to put him back on a plane for Memphis.

David, Oma said it best the day after you left, "I really miss David. He felt like part of the family. It's not the same now that he's gone."

David (and Kirkland, Carl, Jacy, JB, & Paige): y'all are ALWAYS welcome here. I love each of you, and I am forever grateful to y'all for helping to shape me into the person I am today.


  1. Oh just reading this makes me so happy! What a wonderful visit for your family! :) I love reconnecting with people from my past and seeing them again...though I don't really have a story like this one when it comes to those people.

  2. It is amazing how much we learned from our years at BHGH. I'm not sure if I learned more about working with kids or more about myself! I love the fact that we still have such a strong connection and that we remain in contact with everyone from the program. We are truly blessed to have had that experience. Thank you for sharing! Love you and miss you!!!

  3. Love this post - it gave me chills. Being a high school teacher before the SAHM gig, I can't thank you enough for taking part of your life to touch youth...and obviously still touching. You're awesome.