Having a baby can be a joyous time in a couple’s life. Lana was excited when she found out she was pregnant. Her husband Dwayne was happy too, but mostly nervous. But when little Finley was born, his nerves were quickly eased.
“It's really a blessing to have such a good family. It makes me really happy to come home to them every night. They're my world,” Dwayne said.
While Lana was still recovering from the birth, bad news hit the household. Dwayne was let go from his job. Getting money for his family was a priority, so he took the first job offer he got. It didn’t pay a lot, and the labor was hard.
The money Dwayne brought in from that job went straight to Finley’s food. Their baby had tummy troubles and could only tolerate a special formula that was more expensive than a regular brand.
“It’s hard when you have to choose. We would get her formula, but we would still be hungry and trying to figure out how we’re gonna get the money to eat,” Lana shared. But her concerns went deeper. “Especially with him working,” Lana motioned toward Dwayne, “I hated him going to work hungry and not having a lunch to take with him.”
The family had been attending a new church, and they heard about a Feed the Children partner agency near where they live in North Carolina that helps families with food and other supplies.
“We were really ashamed, honestly,” Lana confessed. “It breaks your heart when you think that your kid's gonna go without because you're not doing a good enough job.”
But Lana and Dwayne knew it was time to swallow their pride and ask for help. When they showed up at Anchor Ridge, they were met with open arms and enough food to get them through almost two weeks.
“The moment they helped us out, I almost cried,” Dwayne said. “What felt really good about it, was knowing that there's somebody there to have your back, to help you anytime you need it, and to be there for you. They will always be there for you no matter what, and it really meant a lot to me. It really did.”
Lana pointed out that the gift of food and other supplies from Anchor Ridge was about more than just a meal on the table. Donors like you provided a sense of security for their little girl and relief for these weary parents:
“I don't ever want my daughter to be hungry. But now, she's not gonna go without.”
As the couple recovers from such a hard time, knowing that someone is there to help if they need it has given these parents a new perspective.
“We're really blessed to have a small home and just to barely make it, but I'm glad with what I got. I truly am. I'm really happy with what I got,” Dwayne said. “It makes my work drive a whole lot better to just go to work every day knowing, you know, that I have a family at the house that I need to support and stuff like that. And I'm willing to do anything I can to make sure that there's always food on the table for my family.”
A new perspective for Lana comes in the form of a new family tradition. She’s started making mealtimes a time to focus on what they do have.
“That's one of the only times of the day that we are together 'cause he's working, and I'm taking care of her. Just being able to say the blessing together—that was always a big thing for me when I was growing up with my family, and I feel like that's an awesome tradition to be able to pass down to Finley, to say your prayers before we eat.”
This time together helps Lana reflect on where they’ve been and where they are today. They wouldn’t be there if it weren’t for donors like you.
“A lot of people can't find a job, or they have a job, but they just don't make enough money. And you've just got to think about those kids and how much they really need food. And when you're sitting at your dinner table and you don't have to worry about how you're gonna eat or anything else, it's really a blessing.”