Transformation - Annual Report 2015 - The Harris Center - Page 9

From Darkness to Sunshine
On one day in May of 2015 , Rosa noticed that the creek 50 yards near her house was overflowing . As the water entered her home , she quickly removed Ingrid , her 29 year old daughter , from her wheelchair , placed her on an elevated bed and called 211 requesting emergency evacuation . Within ten minutes the water rose to 12 inches . Firemen and a large bus arrived to safely evacuate the two to a nearby school . The next day she saw the damage wreaked upon her home and the beauty salon equipment she had purchased throughout the years . In spite of this , she recalls not feeling hopeless because she noticed the sunshine and the beautiful smile on her daughter ’ s face . Born without a disability , Ingrid has not spoken since age two and needs total care due to her diagnosis of Rhett Syndrome , IDD and Cerebral Palsy . Rosa was grateful to be alive .
Just nine months before , though , she was overwhelmed and felt like she could no longer live . With the recent and unexpected death of her husband ; the loss of income to pay for shelter , food , transportation and care items for Ingrid ; violent fights between her two sons ; citations issued to her son for not attending school ; and the constant fatigue , depression and crying spells , she felt that there was only one thing to do . She decided to drop her daughter off at the footsteps of The Harris
Center and take her life , feeling that her death was an attractive alternative for all .
As she pushed her daughter up the ramp of the 7011 Southwest Freeway location , she thought about one last farewell to a social worker she had known for 25 years . That call resulted in intervention by IDD Crisis Care , Service Coordination , Mobile Crisis Outreach Team , Community Behavioral Supports Team and the Specialized Treatment and Rehabilitation Services Clinic . Rosa received crisis counseling , an emergency application for a Nursing Home and Community Services ( HCS ) Diversion slot for Ingrid , home visits to address conflict between her sons and follow-up services .
Ingrid now receives HCS services from her mother as Foster Companion Parent . Her brothers have reconciled and are regularly attending school . Rosa receives on-going support from The Harris Center staff , her neighbors and members of her church .
Rosa likes to tell others how she and her adult children have gone from a period of complete darkness to a time of joy and sunshine .
“ I Am Making It !”
Letrice Dennis sees herself as a “ woman who is making it !” She did not have such confidence in 2012 , when she arrived in Houston , Texas .
Having been born a “ country girl ” in the small rural town of Columbia in north Louisiana , she has traveled many bumpy and dangerous roads . She admits some of these dangers were created by self-imposed unhealthy behaviors , while others were beyond her control .
Growing up in a small town did not allow for much economic stability , so her mother decided to move in with a cousin to share living expenses . Regrettably , this resulted in Letrice experiencing four years of physical abuse between the ages of 10-14 . At age 14 , she ran away from home , starting a journey of extreme mood swings , foster care placement , diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder , alcohol and drug abuse , suicidal ideation , multiple admissions to psychiatric hospitals in different cities and on-going relapses .
Letrice did experience joyful moments , such as when she was adopted by one of the foster parents , found her best friend in one of her foster sisters and when she gave birth to three boys and one girl . She also has grandchildren that she loves to spoil .
She recalls that her first visit in 2012 to Houston was intended to be short , to visit family . She then realized that she could receive appropriate help at The Harris Center . She met staff members who helped her to understand her relapses , and realized that her cycles of self-medicating could end her life . Letrice started a regular regiment of taking her prescribed medications , keeping clinic appointments , attending group therapy and maintaining her sobriety .
Today , Letrice happily shares that she is convinced that , “ God led her to where she is today . ” She finds support in her family , lives independently and has a boyfriend . She is a Lead Peer Support Advocate at the Southwest Mental Health Clinic of The Harris Center , where she is empowering others in their journey to recovery .
Annual Report 2015 | Transformation | 7
From Darkness to Sunshine On one day in May of 2015, Rosa noticed that the creek 50 yards near her house was overflowing. As the water entered her home, she quickly removed Ingrid, her 29 year old daughter, from her wheelchair, placed her on an elevated bed and called 211 requesting emergency evacuation. Within ten minutes the water rose to 12 inches. Firemen and a large bus arrived to safely evacuate the two to a nearby school. The next day she saw the damage wreaked upon her home and the beauty salon equipment she had purchased throughout the years. In spite of this, she recalls not feeling hopeless because she noticed the sunshine and the beautiful smile on her daughter’s face. Born without a disability, Ingrid has not spoken since age two and needs total care due to her diagnosis of Rhett Syndrome, IDD and Cerebral Palsy. Rosa was grateful to be alive. Just nine months before, though, she was overwhelmed and felt like she could no longer live. With the recent and unexpected death of her husband; the loss of income to pay for shelter, food, transportation and care items for Ingrid; violent fights between her two sons; citations issued to her son for not attending school; and the constant fatigue, depression and crying spells, she felt that there was only one thing to do. She decided to drop her daughter off at the footsteps of The Harris Center and take her life, feeling that her death was an attractive alternative for all. As she pushed her daughter up the ramp of the 7011 Southwest Freeway location, she thought about one last farewell to a social worker she had known for 25 years. That call resulted in intervention by IDD Crisis Care, Service Coordination, Mobile Crisis Outreach Team, Community Behavioral Supports Team and the Specialized Treatment and Rehabilitation Services Clinic. Rosa received crisis counseling, an emergency application for a Nursing Home and Community Services (HCS) Diversion slot for Ingrid, home visits to address conflict between her sons and follow-up services. Ingrid now receives HCS services from her mother as Foster Companion Parent. Her brothers have reconciled and are regularly attending school. Rosa receives on-going support from The Harris Center staff, her neighbors and members of her church. Rosa likes to tell others how she and her adult children have gone from a period of complete darkness to a time of joy and sunshine. “I Am Making It!” Letrice Dennis sees herself as a “woman who is making it!” She did not have such confidence in 2012, when she arrived in Houston, Texas. Having been born a “country girl” in the small rural town of Columbia in north Louisiana, she has traveled many bumpy and dangerous roads. She admits some of these dangers were created by self-imposed unhealthy behaviors, while others were beyond her control. Growing up in a small town did not allow for much economic stability, so her mother deci Y[ݙH[]H\[\H][^[\ˈYܙ]XK\\[Y[]XH^\Y[[\YX\و\X[X\H]Y[HY\و L LM ]YH M H[]^HHYK\[H\^Hو^[YH[[\\HX[Y[ XYۛ\و\\\ܙ\[[YX\KZXY[YX][ۋ][\HYZ\[ۜXX]X][[Y\[]Y\[ۋY[[\\˂]XHY^\Y[HY[[X\[H\YYHۙHوB\\[[\\Y[[ۙHو\\\\[[H]B\YH\[ۙH\ H[\ܘ[[[]Hݙ\[ HX[]\\\][ L\ۈ\[[YHܝ \][Z[KH[X[^Y]H[XZ]H\X]H[]H\\[\HY]YY[X\[Y\[\[\[\\[X[^Y]\X\و[[YYX][[[\YK]XH\YHY[\Y[Y[وZ[\\ܚXYYYX][ۜY\[[X\[Y[][[ܛ\\\H[XZ[Z[[\؜Y]K^K]XH\[H\\]H\۝[Y] 8'Y\\HH\^K8'TH[\ܝ[\[Z[K]\[\[[H[\HYY[ B\HXYY\\ܝY]H]H]\Y[[X[[XوH\\[\\HH\[\\[\[Z\\^HXݙ\K[X[\ܝ MH[ٛܛX][ۈ ‚