Tiffany Lane Update:December 21, 2018
I am pleased to share this update from Tiffany Lane and her family about the progress they’ve made during the past year thanks to your generosity and support.
I had been wanting to update all of you for awhile, but things continue to change almost on a daily basis for us, so there would have been a whole lot of edits. As you all know, my children and I suffered a house fire in early 2017, three months after I lost my mother, and 11 months after my husband walked away from our marriage and family. We were broke, I was unemployed, and we were living in whatever motel that I could afford for the week.
It’s been 2 years, 10 months, and 18 days since our lives began the downward spiral and roller coaster ride of epic proportions, and on MY side of the journey, I too learned important lessons about adversity, inspiration, and making a difference, but the one lesson I learned the most was this: Make the Difference you can.
As Chris mentioned in this article about our experience, by the time that I had hit my rock bottom of trying to hold things together on my own for eight months; keeping a roof over the kids heads, feeding them, trying to maintain a full-time job, I was in a very dark place; a place that I never in my life thought that I would be where death seemed like a blessing to me. When he called me within a half hour of receiving my message, his voice alone soothed me. Just the human interaction of a person being compassionate to me, telling me that they were going to help gave me the strength and hope to believe that I just may make it through.
And make it through we did.
Our lives have changed dramatically over the last year. I’m no longer working at the hotel. I now have a job that I adore and pays 70% more working in the mental health industry for a therapists office. In the New Year, I’ll be working closely with a colleague turned friend and her Veteran’s Support Group dealing with our men and women active/retired/disabled dealing with PTSD and the other struggles and scars that come from being in war. As most know, this is a cause that is very near and dear to my heart.
The kids are doing great. Lena is in 4th grade, Richie is in third and they’re excelling in all of their classes. They’re making loads of friends and right now are looking forward to Jesus’ birthday and Santa making a stop at our house. Matthew has been working with my colleagues at my job dealing with his anxiety and depression and is currently studying with a tutor to take his GED and aspires to go to college majoring in social work and dealing with troubled youth.The house is beautiful to us. We’ve had some property tax issues that I am working through, but everything is proceeding as planned and we’re looking forward to another Christmas here together as a family.
When I look back over this last year, I see all of the people who were so generous financially; companies who donated products and services, and volunteers who came in and cleaned, painted, repaired, and did everything possible to get the kids and I back home. But what stands out to me the most is the love, respect, hope, and faith that each and every one of you had for my kids and I. It’s not just financial support or skilled labor that you can make a difference in a person’s life, it’s that you SEE and HEAR them that makes all the difference in the world. A simple hug, a smile, an encouraging word can be the difference between life and death for a person.
“People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel” – Maya Angelou
I will never forget how you all made me feel. You made me feel worthwhile when I felt worthless. Strong when I felt weak. Whole when I felt broken. You gave me the strength to get back up and walk when life would trip me and I fell to my knees.
To some of you, you may feel that you just helped a mom or a family out in their time of need, but you are so much more than that. You gave us back something that money can’t buy and tools can’t fix. You gave us back our happiness, our hope, our faith in our fellow man. You gave us back our smiles, our joy in the little things, and excitement for the future.
God bless each and every one of you. May you all have a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and a wonderful New Year.
Tiffany, Matthew, Adelena, and Richie
If you’d like to contact her directly, Tiffany can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 610-732-9781.