Kirkwood High School student newspaper

Four neediest cases: family

December 4, 2018


Lizzie Stobbe

art by Lizzie Stobbe

Their mother had just gone to the store for some cigarettes and a tea. To please her, her children all decided to take baths so they would be nice and clean when their mother got home. They bathed and laughed, blowing bubbles at each other as they washed themselves. From the bathroom, they heard a knock at the door. They went to answer it.

The knock was their mother. She was at the door–covered in blood.

On the way back from the store, their mother had taken a shortcut home through an alley. Two men happened to be fighting over a gun as she walked by. The men fumbled with the gun, and a bullet shot out planting  itself in their mother’s stomach.

Two weeks later, after a small recovery period, their mother made an announcement. Their family was leaving home to go live across the country. She needed help from their grandmother to get back on her feet, and they couldn’t afford to stay in St. Louis.

“My mother didn’t have a car,” they said. “She didn’t have a job. She’s a single mother. How was she going to pay for anything?”

At their new home, the family faced an entirely fresh set of challenges in a foreign environment. They frequently went weeks without water and electricity and often struggled to get food on the table. After years of financial struggles, their family was eventually evicted. That’s when they had to move back to St. Louis and take shelter with family again.

They currently stay at their aunt’s house. They said they’re content where they are in Kirkwood, near family, and that their family makes them happiest.

“We laugh and joke all day,” they said. “Even at night time, my sister and I are loud, joking. We love watching horror movies together, and my auntie cooks big dinners. [My auntie] wants us to be happy.”

They spend their weekends driving in and out of state visiting their family, and their weeknights messaging their siblings through Instagram. The family is scattered throughout the country, but it doesn’t stop them from connecting every day.

“One time, I lived away from my sisters for a whole year,” they said. “We missed each other. I also missed my brother and my mom. And, after that, no, no, no, I will never leave them again.”

Unfortunately, their mother just had another child, and the family has been struggling financially again. Meaning that even though they recently moved back, they might need to make another move out of state. This time the move would be without some of their siblings who are grown, separating the family again. They don’t know what will happen in the end. Right now they’re taking it day by day.

Donation list:

Household needs

Socks, underwear, hygiene products, food for the house, cups and bowls, silverware, comforters twin size, comforters full size, coconut oil

Person A 

Shirt size XXL, Bra size 43D, Leggings XL, Shoes (Ugg boots) size 10, iPhone, Victoria Secret lotion

Person B 

Playstation, Shirt size M , Pants size 32, Shoes size 10 ½ (Huaraches or Timberland boots)

Person C 

Dark blue Ugg boots size 10 ½ , Shirt size L, Leggings, Pants size 6, Victoria Secret lotion, Laptop

Person D 

Black Uggs size 8 ½ , Shirt size M, Pants size 10, Laptop, Lotion, Pink hoodie, Leggings size M

Person E 

Baby clothes size 3-6 months, Socks, Bibs, Snow suit, Baby bouncer, Toys, Baby towels, Soap, Lotion

Person F 

Shirt size L/XL, Pants size L (no jeans), Winter coat , Something from Victoria Secret, Laptop, Nike Huaraches size 10

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