17 Years and 1 Week

Dropping Michael off in his dorm 8/25/12

17 years and 1 week before this picture was taken, an 18 year old girl gave birth to baby boy.  17 years and 1 week later she dropped him off in a strange town so he could follow his dreams at college.  The 17 years and 1 week leading up to this picture, this girl put off her dreams so he could be able to accomplish his.  During this time she did not let the fact she was a single mom, (from pretty much the first nine years of Michael's life) hinder the fact Michael was going to be able to achieve his goals.  She did not let the fact she was a statistic in the eyes of the judgemental.  She proved that a teenage hispanic girl from the west side of town, with little no to help from the baby's father; could fight through the judgemental, fight through the tough times, and fight through anything that was telling her to just give it up because it's just too damn hard.

Every extra hour worked. Every dollar spent on a private school in hope it would provide a stable foundation.  Every relationship formed. Every relationship broken.  Every fight with Michael's father.  Every fight with Michael.  Every fight with her parents. Every fight with me. Every fight with the school. Every sleepless night worrying if she's doing the right thing. Every night staying up helping with last minute homework. Every prayer, every day that didn't seem like they were being  answered or not fast enough. Knowing that standing there in that lobby, holding her baby boy as tight as she could, as long as she could, that the prayers were being answered the entire time. And this time, this moment was what everything they went through, everything they endured, everything she dedicate half her life to was all for the purpose of getting him here 17 years and 1 week later.

Welcome to Boltonshire.