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Posts Tagged ‘Thresholds’

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Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

Jack interviews Martha via Google Hangout.

Jack interviews Martha via Google Hangout.


My nephew Jack, a nine-year-old 4th grader, had a class assignment this holiday to interview his hero. He chose my youngest daughter Martha. Martha is a social worker in Chicago and couldn’t be with us for Thanksgiving. (She is coming home for Christmas! Yay!) I had the privilege of listening in on his conversation with her in a Google Hangout. He had a list of 9 questions.

Martha is a Community Support Specialist with Thresholds, a nonprofit organization that works with the those living with mental illness. What struck me most about the interview were her convictions about being a good listener and giving voice to people who have been silenced through society. She spoke with understanding and respect for her clients.

Being Martha’s mother and she being my baby, I haven’t really appreciated her selflessness. As she was growing up, she was the quiet one. She was always well behaved. She did well in school. When she decided to go to Chicago, I worried. I worried about stupid things like will she be warm enough and how will she navigate such a large place. I didn’t tune in the significance of her work. During Jack’s interview, I saw her differently. I saw her as his hero. I saw her as an advocate for the lonely, the homeless, the mentally ill. She became my hero.

Today, I celebrate my daughter. I celebrate special time with my family. I celebrate heroes.

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Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago

Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago

sisters graduation

We are celebrating in Chicago with our three lovely daughters the success of daughter number three. Last night Martha was hooded in Rockefeller Chapel on the campus of the University of Chicago. She received her masters in social science administration (social work). With about 200 others, Martha walked the sacristy of the chapel to receive her hood. Martha made the decision to attend U of C because of the top level program. She worked hard for two years. She will continue this difficult work with a nonprofit known as Thresholds. She will work with mental health patients in the justice program. I admire her dedication to improving the lives of unfortunate people. Of course, as a mother, I worry. I must let go of this and allow her to move into what she was “meant to do.”

I cannot help but marvel at my daughters. How did I create such a force of three women set out to be the best they can be in a shaky world? These girls are not shaken. They are strong and determined. I celebrate them. My husband and I keep looking at each other with that look, “we did this!”

Jeff and I at Lake Michigan celebrating blue.

Jeff and I at Lake Michigan celebrating blue.

baby kitten

Last week Maggie and I rescued a kitten from our neighbor’s car. I heard the loud mew on Thursday and spent some time under the car coaxing and comforting this distraught kitten, but I could not get her to come out. On Friday morning I heard the cries again, from the same neighbor’s car. I enlisted Maggie’s help. She has scars to show for it. She reached in to the car’s hood and grabbed the kitty, hissing and thrashing. Maggie had put on gardening gloves, but parts of the car scraped her arms. Kitten saved! We set her up on a back screened porch away from the other animals.

Over the weekend, I fed her, talked to her, and eventually was able to hold her without her hissing. On Monday I took her to our vet and found out she was a healthy girl maybe 4-5 weeks old. I then set out to find her a home.

I had a lunch date with my friend Carolyn. When she arrived, I said, “I have something to show you.” Sold! Carolyn texted her daughter, and they decided to take her. Here is the happy new mama (or grandma) with the kitten. I celebrate new life, new homes, and happy mamas.

Carolyn with kitty

What are you celebrating this week? Blessings abound!

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