For many kids in care, the ultimate dream is to return home – to no longer be part of the system, to be a normal kid. For all that we do to make The Children's Home family and to give our kids as much normalcy as possible, there are limitations, rule and regulations we must follow and situations that are most decidedly not part of a typical teen life.
Christine* was presented with that "ultimate dream." She knew that going home was on the horizon for her, and as tempting as it was, she decided to go to court and tell the judge she wanted to stay at The Children's Home. It was a tough decision, but one she was confident in. "I had to think about what would be best for me, and what wouldn't be good for me."
What Christine felt would serve her best interest was the continued support system available to her at The Children's Home. "I have people here who stand behind me, like with my decision to accept God. They support me, and they're there to listen when I need them. I can talk to them – they help me evaluate my situation and make good decisions."
"I've grown more patient with people since I've been here, and I'm learning to communicate better. I've learned that I'm beautiful, and I'm worth it and I have meaning in this lifetime. I really love it here. It's my home."
Christine felt sure that returning to her former home would mean returning to old habits and old patterns of doing things. She believes too much in her potential and in herself to put her future in jeopardy.
We asked Christine about her future, and want you to hear her thoughts in her own words: Where do you see your life in 2 years if you had gone back home? I'd probably be addicted to drugs... have a couple of kids...
Where do you see your life in 2 years, having made the decision to stay at The Children's Home? I want to graduate high school and become a counselor or a pediatrician. I don't want to work in fast food all my life... I want a good job. I hope I can come back here and work someday – be a therapist or something.
We are excited to be playing a role in Christine's life – to have a hand in restoring her identity, changing her path and changing her future.