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Unlike many, I never had someone treat me less than due to my status as a foster youth. However, I did have people look at me differently- just not in the way you would think.

I have always been expected to succeed, regardless of my situation, being that I refused to tell anyone I was in foster care while in it, and I always participated in extracurricular activities, literally never missed school, always had "A's" in AP and Pre-AP classes, and was on track to go to college.

The way that people who knew, like my best friend, rugby coach, band director, pastors, etc. viewed me differently was that I had a chance to create history for my future family. Rather than give me a pity party, they decided to give me more support and even raise their expectations for me as an almost [action of] admiration- these people always saw the potential in me I never knew I had.

The combination of more support and higher expectations led me to graduating with a 3.68 in spite of the worst time in my life being the fall semester of my junior year in high school. I had decided to get myself arrested, nearly failed all of my classes, suffered severe depression, and was put into foster all in one semester. The vast encouragement I received from my supportive friends and adults led to my being recruited by multiple prestigious universities such as the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma City University, and Oklahoma State University.

When I acknowledge the disparities faced as being in foster care compared to the rest of society, I realize I could never thank my permanent connections enough for not only holding me to the standards of "beating the odds", but also going so far as to ensure that I was being recruited like a football player for something I loved doing. 

I would never have reached any of the many accomplishments I have attained without them.


Aug 14, 2016 By Tubaman05