The time is always right to do what is right.
– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
My alarm went off, and after a few snoozes, I made my way out of our warm bed and into the routine that makes up, for me, part of normal life. Feeding my dog, making coffee in the quiet and privacy of my space. Sharing a peaceful life with a man who would only hurt anyone who ever hurt me. My safe place. My home.
On the flip side of my charmed life, there are a group of women and families who are amidst the struggle right now of leaving the homes they know and taking their lives back, leaving behind sad stories of human trafficking or domestic abuse. More often than not, they leave behind their confidence as well. Thankfully, some of these families are taken in by Mosaic Family Services, and provided a safe haven including food, clothing and many other necessities until they can get back on their feet.
Just less than two months ago, I conspired with Amanda Servis, Allie Tanner and Kaylee Karch at Lucky Locks Beauty Bar to give some confidence back to the women and families at Mosaic’s shelter with Le Ta, Mosaic’s talented Development Director. I enjoyed connecting dots, coordinating the details, reminding people where to go and what time, and to happily sweep up hair. Some flight attendant friends donated heaps of hotel amenities (Thanks, Bethany Reinhart, Taly Crowe and Marci Acosta!), some friends of Lucky Locks contributed hair products, and like that, a few good people made a difference.
“We could be any of these women. Any of these ladies could be my sister or my best friend”, Amanda said to me as she unpacked her hair dryer, a pile of brushes and scissors. We all re-arranged the chairs and I turned on the music. A few timid faces appeared at first, but soon enough there were women and children all around, each of them patiently waiting for their turn. Except for Hector, our first client, along with his mother and baby sister. Hector came at us like a bolt of lightning, with spunk and vigor! He’s the boy with his hands all over the camera in Cameron’s beautifully made Tear Drop Project Film. Each woman gracefully took the chair and got back up with a huge smile on her face. We were told that one of the women had never been seen with her hair down until our event, but after her haircut she went to her room and came out wearing an adorable head band, hair down. We laughed, we worked, and we danced with the children. It was inspiring and uplifting to see the transformations throughout the day.
One of the ladies shared her story of falling in love with an ill-tempered man, living homeless for five years, and becoming an alcoholic to cope with it all. She came to Mosaic one week ago, and while we knew that she had just begun the journey of taking her life back, she appeared ready to face the world. Maybe it was an inner-hope that she had unlocked inside herself. Maybe it was the hair cut. Maybe it was the support from volunteers and Mosaic staff who have joined together to let her know that she matters, and that she absolutely deserves a normal life. After all, she could be my sister or my best friend.