Heather’s Story

#NHHAW“I wanted to give up, but Rainbow Village wouldn’t let me. I was so lost. They loved me
through the worst time in my life. There was always someone there. They helped me
realize that I control my own destiny.”
Heather was a criminal justice student with a bright future ahead of her. She was
happily married and learned that she was pregnant with her first child at age 23.
Motherhood put her education on the back burner. She had to go to work to help
support their growing family.
The years passed quickly, and before she knew it, she had 4 wonderful children. But
life threw her some big curves along the way. She and her first husband divorced and
Heather found herself in debt due to large student loans to repay and no diploma to help her find a job that would support the needs of her family. She remarried, but her second marriage ended with a restraining order and a desperate flight to the protective walls of the Partnership Against Domestic Violence. Heather was doing everything she could to
hang on and keep her family together. It was then she found Rainbow Village.
Heather’s plan was to be back on her feet within 6 months, but shortly into her stay at
Rainbow Village, her world began to unravel. Her second husband filed legal charges
against her and launched an aggressive custody battle. That’s when Rainbow Village’s
network of support kicked into high gear. Rainbow Village staff helped her find legal
representation and the counseling support that she needed. She lost custody of her kids
for a while, but Rainbow Village stood by her and helped her fight. In the end, she was
able to bring three of her four kids back home. She continues to fight to regain custody
of her 5-year-old son but cherishes the never-ending words of encouragement and
support she receives from the Rainbow Village community along the way.
In 2010, Heather graduated from the Rainbow Village program. She remains active in
the graduate program and still keeps her mission statement, written during a Rainbow Village life skills course, posted on her refrigerator. Reminding her of
her goal, it reads:

“To realize I control my own destiny by my words, attitude and actions.”

When asked about her time at Rainbow Village, Heather said, “I used to be full of fear and
worry. I no longer worry about what I can’t control. I take no day for granted. This is
just something I had to go through. It was not because of anything I did; it was done to
me. I will be forever grateful to everyone Rainbow Village for standing by me when no
one else would.”