Monday, February 16, 2009


I met Mikah while volunteering for the Do1Thing project. She’s just turned 20 and is currently living at Bridge House in Portland, right in my neighborhood. Here are few details from her past:
Her father abandoned the family when she was an infant. At 14 she was placed in foster care because of her Mother’s drug addiction. At 17 she ran away to Las Vegas where she lived on the streets, slingin dope, stealing and using meth. Pregnant at 18 she was forced to surrender her parental rights. About 14 months ago she found out she was pregnant again. Hoping to avoid repeating her past mistakes and give this baby a chance she knew she had to get clean. She and her boyfriend went to live in Mexico with her boyfriend’s parents and kicked. About 7 months ago she returned to Portland Oregon where she couch surfed, slept on friend’s floors and eventually got into Bridge House.
Jordan is now 5 months old, chubby and bright eyed. Mikah attends AA meetings with her Mother and is working towards getting her GED. She hopes to get some education, a decent job and be a good mother to her son, hopefully earn back some parental rights to her now 2 year old daughter.
There were a few consistent themes that ran in the stories of the kids I met and spoke to while working on Do1Thing, primarily drug addicted parents, the foster care system and methamphetamine. If I learned nothing else it was that the best contribution to society I can ever make is to be a good parent to my own kids.
Mikah wants that for Jordan. The odds are stacked steeply against her. I hope she makes it, for her and Jordan’s sake.

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