Mothers Come in Many Different Forms
Sarah Gerhing, Therapist and Post Adoption Supervisor, has been with The Villages for 7 years and has worked with countless children and youth. Everyone Sarah has worked with has a special place in her heart, but a there was one youth who made a lasting impression.
Teon’s story is tragic. When he was 5 years old he was placed in foster care. He was adopted, but sadly Teon’s adoptive mother passed away and he found himself back in foster care. When Sarah met him he was preparing to leave the foster care system and live on his own. Sarah’s job was to teach him life skills that would prepare him for independent living.
While Teon worked with Sarah he obtained his GED and got his driver’s license. The two worked to identify Teon’s life goals, and created a plan that would help him achieve those goals. Teon wants to be a police officer. He applied and was accepted into the Army so he could received training and experience that he can use later. Teon just completed Boot Camp, and stays in touch with Sarah. “He’s a kid who has worked so hard,” said Sarah Gerhing. She is so proud of what he has accomplished considering the hardships he has faced.
Teon and Sarah have a special bond. Last year, Teon called Sarah on Mother’s Day and said “I know you are not my mom, but I wanted to wish you a happy Mother’s Day because you’ve been like a mom to me”. Sarah was touched by his thoughtfulness. “He made me cry,” she said. “He’s such a sweetheart.”
A “mother” takes on many different forms; at The Villages, we believe a “mother” can be any special woman in a child’s life. For Teon it is Sarah, the one who helped him overcome a painful childhood and worked with him to become a successful adult…who has loved him like a mother would love a child. On behalf of The Villages’ children “Happy Mother’s Day” to all Mothers…the biological, foster, and adoptive mothers; to Grandmothers; friends; neighbors; and social workers! Thank you for all the love and support you show the children in your life.
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