Taylor grew up with many challenging obstacles. She had single mother who worked hard to provide during times where her biological father had been absent in and out of prison and battling with substance abuse and many issues from his own past. After being adopted by her mothers husband, she was given a second chance at having a father who loved Taylor as his own. However, she always longed for the missing puzzle piece her biological left. From a very early age Taylor knew why her biological father wasn’t around and notes that it is what made her the strong, young woman she is today. As a young child she was diagnosed with many medical conditions,!such as Celiac Disease, Hashimoto’s Disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and Lupus. Despite everything stacked against her, she always pushed through it with a smile on her face.
As she got older, her mother and father had given her the option to get to know her biological father, who was clean and trying to better his life. A month before meeting, he relapsed and that chance for her slipped away. A few years later though, he reached out to Taylor on social media, telling her that he wanted to be a father to her. With her strong faith, and help from her supports, she finally gave him the chance. Taylor knew that she didn’t want to live her life with the regret of never getting to know the man who made her who she is today, and make the decision to build a relationship. Taking care of her parent wasn’t what she had in mind, but she knew from her heart that she was going to love him back to life, despite how hard this can be. He had wonderful moments where he was living clean and everything seemed great until she faced the hard reality, he had relapsed again.
Although growing up with a parent who wrestled with addiction, this was the first time she had dealt with the hurt and disappointment that comes with it. Having faced all she has in life, she isn’t allowing this to stop her positive outlook. Taylor is a big example of resiliency, and knew that each time she fell down she got back up even stronger. Rather than be held back, Taylor wants to use her experience to help other youth in the community that are in the same position as her. She also wants for others to know that it’s possible to get back up. She is pursuing a degree in social work so she can do just that. Growing up she felt that she didn’t have someone she could go to who would understand her situation, so she wants to be that for other kids throughout our city.
“Narcan is great and can save someone’s life, but it don’t forget the families and children who carry this weight, and that is where I want to help. Don’t forget to thank people for the good, and the bad, because it’s what makes you who you are”
Faces of New Bedford is a project by Colton Simmons. If you are interested in booking a shoot or getting prints from the series email all inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org
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Read more of the Faces of New Bedford series here