Vancity Business Babes, Raising Jay & Abel, Mint & Birch, M & Him Photography, The Gift of Giving 2016, Shop Hunnis, Fashion, OOTD, Motherhood

Last year, I wrote about Sponsored Gifts for Women of The Downtown Eastside, I was new to the blogging sphere and didn’t know how to express my thoughts freely without fear.

Raising Jay & Abel, Mint & Birch, M & Him Photography, The Gift of Giving 2016, Shop Hunnis, Fashion, OOTD, Motherhood

This year, however, I’ve used to writing as solace for all my pain that I’ve hidden for 25 years.

When I sit and share the details of my childhood, I’m met with surprised faces and “I’m sorry”. It’s true, my family and I have been through hell and back – perhaps that is the reason why we never go a day without speaking or saying “I love you” to one another.

My father was addicted to drugs.  Not only was he addicted to drugs, he was abusive, paranoid and made our lives a living hell. When your living with an abusive parent who’s addicted to drugs, you start to notice   a pattern.

  1. You never stayed at the same school for longer than a year or (two max);
  2. You get used to hearing “back your bags, were leaving”;
  3. You get used to them calling your other parent vulgar names (in this case my mom was called every name under the sun);
  4. You felt numb when you saw abuse happen. It’s just another day;
  5. You learn not to get attached to anything or anyone;
  6. Friends were non existent (Thank god for my sister & brother); and
  7. You get used to not seeing them for long periods of time.

When my mom decided to leave my dad, we were left with nothing. We had to rebuild everything that was destroyed. We stayed in shelters, we ate at soup kitchens, and we learned to cherish everything that was given to us by those who were able. The people that were so generous and kind to give to my mother, when she finally found the courage and strength, are the people that made it easier for us to start our future.

Raising Jay & Abel, Mint & Birch, M & Him Photography, The Gift of Giving 2016, Shop Hunnis, Fashion, OOTD, Motherhood

When I was younger, I swore that when I had the opportunity to give back, I would. Thats why I cherish the Sponsor Gifts for the Women of the Downtown Eastside so dearly, and why I decided to be part of this   sponsorship opportunity again. This sponsorship allows women from The downtown eastside to receive a beautiful gift this Holiday Season!

Each Gift includes a Botanical Personal care set including Shea Butter, hand cream & a Holiday body wash, cozy socks, hair ties, feminine hygiene products, New/Unused underwear from all beautifully put together with a handwritten card.

The price to cover the cost of each gift is $25 but you can donate any amount and sponsor as many gifts as you choose !

Our goal is to sponsor 200 gifts women who might not otherwise receive anything this year.Get in touch with myself at or Danielle pure_safe_beneficial at if you’d like to be involved !

Vancity Business Babes, Raising Jay & Abel, Mint & Birch, M & Him Photography, The Gift of Giving 2016, Shop Hunnis, Fashion, OOTD, Motherhood

Vancity Business Babes, Raising Jay & Abel, Mint & Birch, M & Him Photography, The Gift of Giving 2016, Shop Hunnis, Fashion, OOTD, Motherhood

Vancity Business Babes, Raising Jay & Abel, Mint & Birch, M & Him Photography, The Gift of Giving 2016, Shop Hunnis, Fashion, OOTD, Motherhood


Raising Jay & AbelPhotography: M & HIM

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  • lesliekweesner

    You are such an inspiration!

  • Shannan Panganiban

    Such strength portrayed here. Thank you so much for sharing this journey!

  • Katie

    You are an inspiration! Thank you for sharing your story and being honest with us. Beautiful way of giving back!

  • Beth Newcomb

    What a beautiful way to pay forward. ❤

  • your story gives me the chills! I used to work with children with similar pasts, and it is truly heartbreaking. I love how you share your strength and resilience with others mama!

  • Eryka Spera

    You are amazing!! I can’t imagine what you went through

  • Rachel Loza

    Thank you so much for sharing. I’m so sorry you had to go through this but I applaud you for giving back! <3

  • Ashley McClellan Houston

    This is a great article. Thank you for sharing your story

  • Raising Twincesses

    That is such an amazing cause! Thank you for sharing your story and for helping those who need it most!

  • Jessica Koza

    What a great cause! You are amazing for sharing your story Heydy!

  • Anna Strazi Thompson

    Thank you for sharing your story. You are so brave for opening up and sharing your story. I know that you will touch the lives of many!

  • Nicole Banuelos

    Such a wonderful cause! I love that you are sharing your story and how you have found such a beautiful way to give back. This is so awesome!

  • what a great cause and how brave to share your story! i’m sure your an inspiration to young women who went through or are going through similar situations.

  • Ashley Solberg

    Wow, thank you for sharing this. I know it had to have pulled on your heart strings to do so and I am sure this will give strength to many to reach out and be there for others.

  • Trysmallthings

    Shoot — I just lost my comment. I’m glad you found a space space to share and hope you’ll keep doing so, Heydy — you’ve got all kinds of people rooting for you. And I love campaigns like the one you’re supporting. I participate in a Christmas drive for The Shoebox Project, which provides boxes of toiletries and little luxuries for women in shelters. You’re going to make a lot of women feel loved.

  • Trysmallthings

    I’m so happy you’ve found a safe space where you can share, and I’m happy to hear about campaigns like this one that can make a difference in the lives of women who are struggling. I participate in something similar called The Shoebox Project, where you fill a box with new toiletries and other small luxuries for women in shelters. We do it at Christmastime, but it would be a really nice thing to do throughout the year as well. Keep sharing, Heydy — you have all kinds of people rooting for you.

  • Thanks for sharing this, Heydy! My heart bleeds for the childhood you endured. My dad was emotionally abusive when I was growing up and my mom finally left him (with my brothers and I) when I was 23 – old enough to move out on my own. I know the abuse I endured is only a fraction of what you endured, but it makes my heart go out to anyone who is living with abuse. I’d love to help with this initiative.

  • My eyes definitely teared up on this one. I know what it is like to have an addicted parent, still to this day. It sucks because when you are younger there is nothing you can do, you are at the will of adults. I nor my brothers never ended up in a shelter, but we had family members step in when I was the age of 8. I am so glad you are giving back. Sometimes friends and people just don’t understand your background and it’s hard for them to get that you don’t know what a “normal” family is or why you act the way you do! But there is always someone out there who gets you!

  • Kristen Osborne

    I would like to commend you for your courage and ability to share your story. My sister is an addict and I know she struggles every day, she is doing very well right now. But, the damage is done her son and daughter went through the ringer and they will never get their childhood back. Thank you so much for sharing your story! You are an inspiration and a role model to all those children who can’t see a way out yet. Great job!!!

  • You are such an inspiration, Heydy! I absolutely love the giving and generosity in your heart because of your childhood struggles. Thank you for telling your story!

  • Dawnene Law

    So incredible that you are sharing your story. I can’t imagine how difficult it is, but I know someone will read this and think “this is me”, and your post will help them through it. Beautiful Heydy <3

  • Chelsea McKinney

    You are brave to share your story and have a heart of pure gold to want to make a difference!

  • I am so happy you shared about this. Although my dad wasn’t an addict, I grew up being physically abused by him. My childhood and teen years were really my darkest times but I got through it❤ Heydy, you are an amazing woman and I am so glad that you are taking part in this campaign. Such an amazing way to give back!

  • Patricia

    I am so happy that you spoke out. Your voice is needed and I’m sure you have encouraged many people who may have grown up in similar situations. And what a wonderful way to give back!