11.01.2009

Part 4 of Black Women in America Raising Boys: "Being a Part of Something Great"

By Mavis Jackson

My name is Mavis Jackson and I am the mother of five children, four of them boys. I not only was blessed to be a part of the life-changing documentary “Raising Boys”, I also received the honor of being the woman that God chose to give birth to the extraordinary black man who gave birth to it. It was a privilege to be interviewed and to share my experience, strength and hope about the topic, and having first hand knowledge of that, my son knew I easily qualified.

I was a single mother and for most of my children’s lives we were on welfare and food stamps. We had some challenges, but with the help of God and my mother, we made it through them. I had friends who had boys that were going to prison, getting addicted to drugs and making other negative life choices, but my boys didn’t get caught up. Today I believe that was due to the grace of God and the love of a family that would not spare the rod.

I was raised by a single mother and had a loving relationship with my biological father. Throughout my life I saw my mother work hard and overcome the challenges associated with being a single mom. Her example gave me the courage I needed when I found myself in that same position. I became a mother at 16, and I tell everyone that my children and I “grew up together”, which made for a very special bond.

At one point in their lives, my children lived through my drug addiction. They experienced the neglect that an addiction causes, and hunkered down to take care of each other. I am not proud of my addiction but I am grateful for it, because had I not gone through it, I would not be the person I am today.

Today I am a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and I help people who are where I used to be. All four of my sons are successful, productive, law-abiding men. They are living proof that with the help of God and people like Brother Deric, single mothers can produce good men.

I pray that every single mother everywhere has an opportunity to see this documentary. It will encourage them, support them and help them to better understand their roles; and with that knowledge comes power.

The documentary will premiere on November 5, 2009 at the Angelika Theater here in Houston. Anyone wanting to be in the know will want to be in attendance.

(For more information on the "Raising Boys" documentary log on to:http://raisingboysdocumentary.eventbrite.com)


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