With no way to recover the lost money from missed days at work or lost food at home, I fell further behind. In November I found myself cashing books in early to have our LG&E turned back on, and by December, I was 2 1/2 months behind on my mortgage.
I was referred by a friend to call Catholic Charities, who then referred me to St. Vincent de Paul and Fern Creek Ministries. They not only called the Louisville Water Co. and paid for my water to be turned back on, but they gave me groceries and birthday party supplies for my daughter’s 4th birthday when they read my application and noticed it was almost her birthday. I cried and felt so ashamed and so grateful at the same time.
This was on December 11, 2008. Before I left their office they asked if I was okay on Christmas presents, and I said ‘yes,’ but the woman could tell that I was lying. I was so caught off guard because Christmas hadn’t entered my mind yet. I was so focused ontrying to keep the house, the lights and water on, and the girls fed that I’d failed to even put a tree up yet.
The following week or so I got a visit from a couple from St. Vincent de Paul, who asked if they could come to my home to visit and, essentially, interview me. Long story short: that same couple returned to my home asking for my latest mortgage statement so that they could pay the past due amount. I will never forget his response to me when I asked how I could ever repay him. He said, “Takea deep breath and enjoy Christmas with your children. Keep doing what you’re doing, and keep God in their lives, and that will bethanks enough.”
I knew at that very moment that I could not fail; it was not an option. It has been a struggle ever since, but I assure you without the help that I was given by that parish, I would have lost everything. I am so happy to say that on Saturday May 12th at 2pm, I [graduated] from the University of Louisville, Kent School of Social Work. It has been the hardest thing I have ever done, and I cannot begin to explain what a life-changing journey this has been, but without your help it would never have been possible.
From the bottom of myheart, thank you for changing my future and that of my three daughters.