He is only 2 years old, so little Ash will probably never remember moving from New Mexico to Oklahoma one year ago. He may never remember the last year of his life, or the rundown hotel room that his parents and two siblings lived in. He may not remember the financial struggles as his father, an over-the-road truck driver, worked so hard to provide for his family. He may never remember the stress on his mother's face, as she sought out help to feed her children.
We had the privilege of meeting Ash, Thursday, when his mother, Adele, brought him to Infant Crisis Services. She came in with her closest friend, Brandi, who had used our services before with her five children.
Brandi and Adele met on a Facebook page for Oklahomans helping other Oklahomans. Brandi and Adele immediately connected, because Brandi's story was similar to Adele's personal struggles.
"We've actually become really good friends because of our situation," Adele said.
Brandi was also practically homeless at the time, living with friends while she was struggling to provide for her children. She now has a home of her own, and has taken Adele and her husband and their children in. Although it's only temporary, Adele says it's been a huge help to her family. They hope to have a lease on their own home within three weeks. That home is just four houses down from Brandi.
So while, Ash may never remember the hardships that plagued his family during the first few years of his life, he will probably remember Brandi, his mother's new best friend. He will probably remember growing up with Brandi's five children, and maybe he will remember us at Infant Crisis Services.
"It really is a relief to know there are services out there to help," Brandi said of our organization.
"It would definitely be more of a struggle for families," Adele added. "There are people out there who are willing to help each other, but without organizations like Infant Crisis Services, it would definitely be harder for families to get by."