When I think about Operation Breakthrough and what it means to me, I think of Miss Rachel Rock. She was there when OB was St. Vincent’s school and my sister and I went there as kids. Now she is there for my daughter Mikah, who has gone to OB since she was 3. She is my breakthrough.
Miss Rachel is family in so many ways. When I came back to Operation Breakthrough after not seeing her for over 15 years, she remembered me by name. There was no awkwardness as I had transitioned from a young girl to a woman. Everything felt normal. I’ve always been able to talk to her, be real with her, and be my goofy self with her. She honors my womanhood and doesn’t minimize me. She sees Amira.
When I think about my support system, I have my mom, sister Kori, and my uncle. But the person who receives my child every morning and every afternoon and makes sure she is safe is Miss Rachel. She’s the one who sends me messages and is there when I can’t be. Because I work, I sometimes miss moments of my child. When Mikah is at OB, she has a space to be free and make independent choices on the young lady she wants to grow into. Miss Rachel is my window to see these moments.
Whether it is a random thoughtful message in the middle of the day to reinforce my strengths or an update on a project that Mikah is working on where she was dreaming up an organization to advocate for homelessness, Miss Rachel is there for me. She builds my confidence in my parenting while keeping me accountable in my role as an ambassador of this community. Throughout my experience with Operation Breakthrough, I’ve got Miss Rachel, so I’m okay.
It’s that type of above and beyond generational love here at OB that means the most to me about Operation Breakthrough personally and even more significantly for the future of my daughter.