“I wish life wasn’t so messy. I wish we could see immediate progress in every family that we worked alongside. I wish there was a formula to guarantee healthy, happy families. I wish the services Sheltering Wings offers weren’t even necessary.”
This is what I was thinking as I listened to a resident reflecting on her time here at the Shelter. She was having a difficult time finding good things occurring in her life. I tried to prompt her by asking leading questions, “What are you currently working on that you look forward to achieving? When you look back over the last year, what can you point to that you have overcome?” Her answer broke my heart, “Actually, I think I’ve regressed from where I was a year ago…”
As we kept talking about it, it was a reminder to me of the reality of the world we live in. We want so badly to believe that if a person does A plus B, it will equal success. If only we can empower victims of abuse to seek safe housing and provide appropriate life skill classes and groups, then we’ll break the cycle of abuse. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always turn out that way. Rather, the complications of life’s circumstances, emotions, and strongholds make progress more difficult.
Yet, that is why we continue our work at Sheltering Wings. We know that families sometimes take two steps forward and seven steps back, but we keep going. Together, we overcome obstacles. We encourage one another. We pray for each other. We provide resources and services needed to build safety and stability. Through a lot of sweat and likely many tears, we know that progress is possible. We’ve seen it time and again. For some it takes longer than others, but perseverance prevails.