Neighborhood Story Project

1183 Words 5 Pages
Not many people in the nation knew about the Ninth Ward in New Orleans before hurricane Katrina caused levee failure and catastrophic flooding. Just weeks before the hurricane in 2005, Waukesha Jackson celebrated the publishing of her book with the Neighborhood Story Project. The Neighborhood Story Project is a nonprofit organization in partnership with the University of New Orleans. Over the years they have sold about 50,000 books written by a wide selection of New Orleans voices. What Would the World Be Without Women: Stories from the Ninth Ward by Waukesha Jackson is a collection of stories and interviews of all the women who have had an affect on her life. In her book, Waukesha explores the hardships, achievements, and experiences of these …show more content…
For Kesha’s entire life her mother has been on and off drugs. There were times she has been there for Kesha and times when she wasn 't. “I wished for a real mom and dad, but they were rarely there”(Jackson 10). Kesha always wished her mom would just drop her habit and think of her kids instead. That day never came, but instead she learned how to deal with the loneliness of not having her mom. “There were times when I was left inside alone and hungry. There were days when I would wake up without my mom and nights I didn’t sleep. I had to sit there and think of all the places where I thought she would go, and I would call and they would always say that she just left or that she wasn’t there when I knew that she was right there”(Jackson 11). When her mom wasn’t there for her, Kesha’s life became extremely difficult. It made her realize that mothers are the most important parent in a young girl’s life. Kesha always appreciated all the small memories with her mother. She missed her telling her what to do, talking and laughing, and playing together. Not having her mother in her life made her feel extremely lonely. However by seeing the mistakes made by her mother, Kesha was influenced in a way that helped her make positive choices in her life and get some needed distance. This distance is palpable as is the pain of having her mom being a drug addict during her formative years by the matter of fact way she interviews her …show more content…
It is the way these women deal with these issues that defines who they are. Each of the women whom Kesha interviewed had some sort of obstacle in their life that they had to overcome. Some women conquered their hardships and became stronger, while some slipped into a situation they could not escape from. One of the women who Kesha interviewed was Janalyn Moore Johnson. Janalyn has had one of the toughest lives filled with loss. At age 12 she lost her father and shortly after became suicidal “ I knew from the church that I wasn 't supposed to because I would go to hell. But I felt that I was already living in hell and it couldn 't be much worse and that God would understand, and he would put me with my daddy anyway”(Jackson 28). She continued to be suicidal even after joining the military and meeting the love of her life. Strangely enough the loss of her husband dying at age 34 of a massive heart attack while playing basketball did not push her over the edge, but rather forced her to stop because she did not want to leave her children parentless. Janalyn rather than continue to allow the pain of her losses define her, decided to use her talents to reach young children through a game she invented while in the military. The game is called Kangaroo Court and is designed to help kids resolve conflicts in mock courtroom. This game helps kids deal

Related Documents

Related Topics