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Making a Reset

Have you ever thought life wasn’t going quite right? Did you think your relationships weren’t what you thought they were? Have you ever felt unsafe to ask for help? Did you need a reset? Rosemary felt all those things in another state. After visiting friends in Texas, just after the great “ice-pocalypse,” she and her daughter decided to make a change in 2021. Rosemary said moving to Texas reset their family experience. 

The move wasn’t all roses though. Rosemary learned rent costs in Texas were higher. Often there were other fees that were not included in the rent. That was a practice she wasn’t used to when searching for housing. Also, wages were less than what she anticipated. These unexpected differences made the budget tight. Rosemary is a ballroom dancing instructor and also an online tutor. She was barely making it. Rosemary said, “I knew when I moved to Texas I wasn’t going to make a lot of money. I just had a goal for us to be happy.” While the move was ultimately a positive one, it triggered a sense of overwhelm and crippling anxiety. Leaving a toxic situation and navigating the stress surrounding that and her new life left Rosemary even more desperate for help. Even her Master’s in Psychology couldn’t prepare her for the valley she would climb out of to rebuild confidence in herself as she battled depression.

The Caring Place was one of the organizations where Rosemary sought help to soften the impact of the health and financial crisis consuming her. “The Caring Place showed up when I needed to know someone really cared,” said Rosemary. Rosemary only needed rent and utility assistance one time to maintain stability. She said it was the food that made a longer-term difference. She shared, “Using the Food Pantry and getting help with clothes helped me offset the cost of other bills.” She said because she used the Food Pantry she could pay a phone bill or buy something her daughter needed for school. She also shared, “Because of The Caring Place I was able to fulfill my responsibilities as a parent during a difficult time. It may not have looked like what I thought it would, but I did it. In this day and age, we need to be resourceful in how we take care of our families sometimes. It’s ok to get help to fulfill your parental responsibilities. And you won’t receive judgment at The Caring Place.” She continued, “Coming to The Caring Place really took the stigma out of asking for help.” She recollected another time when money was tight and gas prices were high and she again remembered The Caring Place. At the time, The Caring Place was temporarily helping people with gas cards and Rosemary said that was the help she really needed that week and she felt comfortable enough to ask.

Rosemary repeated that feeling of welcomeness when she said, “I was receiving kindness with both hands. In my previous experience, kindness wasn’t free. It now feels safe to receive help.” Through her experience at The Caring Place and with other positive relationships, Rosemary learned to trust again. She trusts herself and she admits she trusts God again. “I have three degrees and couldn’t make ends meet. I realized it wasn’t just me, but a set of circumstances. If I hadn’t received compassionate, non-judgmental, and accepting care I wouldn’t have felt safe to come to that conclusion.” After coming through to the other side of an unthinkable situation, Rosemary published an online book called Mental Maintenance (Author listed as Rosemary Porter-Witschi). She describes this book as a teacher’s toolbox for building resilience and maintaining well-being in the classroom. The writing was cathartic and also a reminder of how far she had come. She said she recently was reading an article about the signs of a healthy family. She said, “I discovered my daughter and I were a healthy family. So many of the tools about communicating and talking about issues were things we do together. We have learned a lot.” As a healthier family, Rosemary and her daughter are also a happier family, which was her goal when she moved to Texas.

Rosemary’s regained confidence was evident when she shared  her next chapter. She credits God with bringing these experiences and people in her life to prepare her for this life-changing event.

In 2018, before the Texas move was even on the radar, Rosemary found herself learning Ukrainian through a series of events, including taking Polish Saber lessons. Her exposure to the language introduced her to volunteer work teaching Ukrainian children online about resilience. Since 2019, that volunteer experience has been part of her life. She woke up at 5:00 a.m. to teach an online class, then rushed off to teach ballroom dancing. For the last few years, she has continued to learn the language and immerse herself in the culture online making numerous connections and friendships. Those connections lead her to a full-time job opportunity. Rosemary continues to thrive in her work with Ukraine and her new life. Rosemary’s sense of adventure is intact and her confidence is soaring once more as she embarks on this new professional and personal journey. Rosemary came to The Caring Place recently to simply say “thank you” to The Caring Place for helping  her  when she was struggling. That thank you turned into hearing a beautiful story of resilience unfold.


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