(Paola participated in the Wild Womyn Writers workshop & open mic at Corazon del Pueblo in Boyle Heights, California as part of the tour in early September 2011.)
Paola Beas received her Bachelors Degree at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona in Gender, Ethnicity and Multicultural Studies with a concentration in Chican@/Latin@ Studies and a minor in Spanish. She has worked along and advocated for “vulnerable” populations such as the LGBTQ community, those living with HIV/AIDS, sexual abuse survivors, field workers, & the Mental Health population. Paola received her Masters in Social Work from the University of Southern California in May 2011.
Paola began an empowerment women’s support group at the comfort of her home called Empowered Butterfly in September 2010. Empowered Butterfly’s current project is starting Mentoring Program for young women at Garey High School in Pomona, CA. Paola also facilitates a sexual abuse group twice a month in her home. She is inspired by staying connected to peoples life experiences. Paola writes to free her mind & speak her truth as a way to model to others that we are not alone.
I am a single woman with 9 girls and for my girls I pray. They range from 2 months old through 10 years of age. All going through difficult times and looking forward to better days.
At 11 days old, her Mother chose drugs and rage over the bond between them.
At 1 year old, she can already identify her pleasure spot. I wonder if she has been molested and if her constant tears are her way to communicate her pain.
At 2 years old she inserts objects down there and screams “Fuck You!”
At 3 years old, she is being touched by her 5 year old sister who was sexually abused by random men who invaded her valuable vagina. With their dirty hands they affected the life of an innocent child, only to continue this vicious cycle.
My 9 year old diagnosed ADHD and ODD. She cries, laughs, bounces, and runs away all within a 5 minute span.
I am a single woman with 9 girls and for my girls I pray. So that society doesn’t look down on them and label them as hoes, sluts, drug-addicts, low lives. So that they find a way to cope and stay away from the needles, alcohol, cutting, and suicide attempts.
If only people understood that what we wish most as children is to be nurtured by our natural parents. And that when there is a disruption we seek to sooth ourselves through masturbation, OCD, control, over achievement, substance abuse, cutting, food, sex.
I trust that the time I spend with them I can model consistency, love, trust, kindness. Remembering how many people have walked out of their lives, how many new homes they had to call home. How confused they were when the people who were supposed to keep them safe disrupted their lives forever.
I am a single woman.
I am a Foster Care Social Worker and for my girls I pray.
Because I will never know what happened to them, so I trust that my prayer will send comfort their way.