With the Reed family there is always one constant, no matter the situation it is always there permeating any and everything in sight. This constant is love. You would never know how much hardship they face on a daily basis by their attitudes and outlook on life.
“Just because we are in this situation and living in a shelter, that gives us no excuse to be bitter and mean,” Alexandria Reed said. “What it does is gives us hope and opportunity, this is blessing.”
There was a time when everything was great; Alexandria had a successful job as a truck driver (CDL) and was able to provide for her family. This all changed when she became very ill during her pregnancy with her youngest child. She was no longer able to work due to her illness and ultimately lost her job.
When the bills began to pile up and Alexandria was too sick to work, the father left the children and Alexandria to fend for themselves.
Pregnant, ill and now homeless, Alexandria and her children had nowhere to go. Every so often a family member or friend would let them stay a few nights, but for about a year Alexandria tucked her children to bed in their car and they called a hospital parking lot their home.
“I didn’t like when we were living in the car, it was scary. We would be starving and we couldn’t bathe … I didn’t like seeing my mom sad, when she would cry she always pretended she was not crying,” Alexandria’s oldest daughter said, “That is why I try and help my mom. I just want to make my mom smile.”
“I always knew we were going to be OK, it was never a matter of if I can get us through this … I have to get us through this. And sometimes it was really tough to stay positive, and there were nights I felt like I couldn’t do it. I wanted to quit and just give up, but I knew if I quit that we would be split up, and that wasn’t an option. I cried and prayed and cried and prayed … and God answered those prayers, he brought us here.”
Fast forward a year and a half later, and the Reeds are now residents of the Family Haven. Judging by the laughter and smiles, you would never know three months ago they were homeless.
“With everything we have been through, as bad as it was and it was really bad, and with everything we are working through now, they have been …. so good, they are just great kids. God has truly blessed me,” Alexandria said, holding back the tears. “And I just want them to be happy … they deserve it.”
Things are looking up for the Reeds. Determined to find work, Alexandria continues to apply for every job possible. Her children are excelling in the classroom and were on the honor roll.
As they continue to overcome challenges, the Reeds are presented with different hardships. Each day is one step closer to employment, permanent housing, financial stability; each day is one step closer to independence. When the Reeds lost their home they lost everything, all their furniture and cookware, everything Alexandria had worked so hard to provide for her family. As they prepare to make this exciting transition into permanent housing they face a new challenge. Having furnished a home before, Alexandria knows how financially straining it is.
“I am a little scared for this next step, excited but a little scared. Once I get a job and can start saving I will feel much better, but I still worry about if my kids will have to sleep on the floor until I can afford to buy beds,” she said.
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