This story was written by Teresa Lora, a Receptionist with KVC Kansas in our Kansas City office. KVC Kansas provides child welfare and behavioral healthcare services, helping more than 12,000 Kansas children and families each year.
For about a year and a half, I worked with a mom named Stephanie* who had a newborn daughter. Stephanie suffered extreme physical abuse from her husband, and she worried that she wouldn’t be able to keep her young daughter safe. For this reason, she decided to have her parents care for her daughter.
Stephanie was abused so often that she was constantly afraid. When receiving help at a KVC Kansas office, she’d look out the windows, afraid her husband would show up. One incident of assault was so severe that she had to be hospitalized. Her spirit became broken, and she wanted to let her parents keep her daughter.
One day when she came to our office and I told her, “At the end of the day, you love your baby, and I feel like you can protect her. We will go through all the things you need to do, like getting a restraining order and cutting off mutual contacts you have with your husband.”
This resonated with her, and she moved away from her husband.
Faith Brings Stephanie Hope
While she was working on recovering and finding a new home, her parents decided they didn’t want to give her daughter back because they had grown so close to her. After this, she came to me exasperated and not knowing what to do.
“Do you believe in God?” I asked her.
“Yes,” she said.
“Then I’m going to pray, you’re gonna pray and we’re going to ask God for guidance on how to get your daughter back.”
Following this conversation, she completed parenting classes, hired an attorney and secured two jobs.
In time, her attorney helped her get her baby back. A year after she was reunited with her daughter, she came to visit me.
“Miss T.,” Stephanie said, “if it weren’t for you, I don’t know where I would be, because I really wanted to give up.”
She was able to escape the toxic environment that was preventing her from thriving and living a safe and happy life. She and I became personal friends because she was so thankful for me being there for her and her baby, who is now three.
I told her that God forgave her and she needed to forgive herself. She was her own worst critic. Today, she’s doing very well and has her own place and a good job.
One day recently, several former clients came by our office to visit and say thank you. A police officer was in the lobby and mentioned, “Wow Miss T., you really touch people!”
“That’s what we do here,” I replied. “We help people overcome challenges.” – Teresa Lora
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*Name changed for privacy.