The best way to predict the future is to create it. ~Peter F. Drucker

The best way to predict the future is to create it. ~Peter F. Drucker

It takes a lot of courage for a teenager to agree to let someone blog their “story” to the world. Thank you, Paulina, I greatly appreciate your sacrifice.

Paulina’s mother was born and raised in Germany, and moved to Mexico when she was in her twenties to teach German and English at the University. Paulina’s mother soon fell in love and married the man who was to become Paulina’s father. Paulina’s parents opened a German restaurant in Mexico. The menu was based on a collection of delicious family recipes from Germany. Paulina’s dad managed the restaurant and Paulina’s mom was the German chef. A few years after Paulina was born, there was another addition to the family, a baby sister. The family was happy and life seemed good for the parents of the two young girls. The restaurant had become quite popular, Paulina’s father wasn’t home very often. After some time, hardship set in. The marriage fell apart and Paulina’s parents got divorced, but they stayed friends and continued to run a profitable restaurant.

Paulina’s dad remarried and became very involved with his new wife and life; he paid for private school for Paulina and her sister. But Mexico began to go through many changes with the varying social concerns, such as the drug war. The restaurant eventually experienced hard times, the financial concerns facing Paulina’s mom and dad were very difficult. Paulina’s mom had fallen in love with an America artist who was living in Mexico to pursue his artistic goals. He loved the girls very much and gave them what they valued most, his heart. With the extreme circumstances that began to grip Mexico a few years ago, and continued to grow in the years that followed, and with the girls becoming teenagers, Paulina’s mom’s American boyfriend suggested they relocate to the United States. Paulina’s mom and her boyfriend became engaged, (Paulina’s dad agreed to the relocation), the four moved to North Carolina in August 2012, and Paulina’s mom and boyfriend were married in November of 2012.

From the moment Paulina settled into her new home, and her new school, all she wanted to do was run. She dreamed of being a long distance runner and planned on joining the high school cross country team. But first semester was too transitional to join anything. Paulina speaks three languages fluently but she had never lived in the United States. She had studied abroad in Germany the preceding year, and now she was caught up in adapting to yet another culture. Her first objective was to meet people and make friends. Once she reached that goal, it was Thanksgiving and then Christmas.

The big challenge facing Paulina began in January 2013. All of her new friends were so excited to begin participating in spring sports. That’s all they could talk about. Paulina felt left out. She had had that dream too. Track would soon be starting, but she wouldn’t be able to join Track. Her mom and her mom’s new husband were facing extreme financial distress. The relocation from Mexico had been very expensive. Then they had to pay the attorney a substantial amount of money to pursue papers and citizenship. There was a wedding, and although they kept it simple, it was still an expense. All Paulina’s mom wanted to do was work, but she couldn’t until she received her papers. So in January Paulina began to arrive home from school and go immediately to her room and stay there with the door closed for hours. Paulina lost her appetite and was no longer her happy, cheerful self. She never seemed to smile anymore. Her mom became very worried…

I’m so happy that I met Paulina’s mom when I did. It has been such an amazing, gratifying experience to be able to support this wonderful family who has been trying so hard to keep everything together. Paulina is doing very well on the high school Track Team, throwing everything she has into it, trying her best, building excellent habits… and making new friends. Making great memories!

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