HomeMocha Girls on a MissionMocha Girl on a Mission: Erika Collins Terri January 2, 2014 “Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit, and keep moving forward. “ -Rocky I’m a Mocha Girl on a Mission because… I know what it feels like to have parents who are incapable of loving, it made me love harder. I know what it feels like to be rejected and lay in the bed almost every night and cry, it made me stronger. I know all too well what it feels like to NOT have kids and feel like a mother (because others couldn’t step up and play their role), it made me more nurturing. No matter what I’ve gone through in life, I went through to get through. Obstacles I’ve Overcome… Yeah, it was tough to have faith because I had parents (I have two sets.. adopted & biological) that did drugs, ran the streets and never took responsibility for their actions. Had kids they couldn’t take care of & went on with life as if none of this stuff ever happened. Then I had the parents who loved me, and because of all the anger & resentment I had built up, I felt as if I was incapable of loving them. I was the child (like millions of others) who watched a parent die from cancer and felt like life wasn’t worth living anymore…. I was THAT child who was MAD AT THE WORLD!!! Because of all of this I realized It’s easy to believe in yourself when things are easy, but when things get hard…sweet baby Jesus!!! But I always told myself “Erika, if you can look up, you can get up!” It didn’t matter how many times I got knocked down, I stood on that! At times we may need someone to walk the walk with us and hold our hand… Never let your pride get in the way… My Greatest Accomplishments… College graduate: Kutztown University of Pennsylvania Entrepreneur: photographer/ graphic designer Career: Case Manager Advocate, daughter, sister, friend & hands down the BEST auntie on this planet!!! Degree BS: Clinical counseling Through it all, I truly wouldn’t have made it through those journeys if it weren’t for the many people God allowed to be apart of my life. These people have served as a blanket over my life, they’ve kept me warm and safe from all harm. From hospital visits, late night sob stories, pity parties (for my own sake), to just being a shoulder to cry on. Especially one person in particular, Stephanie R. Felder who I can honestly say at one point saved my life. There is this saying “pain is temporary, and at the end of pain is success!” I could sit here all day and continue to talk about how I was almost a college drop out because I couldn’t balance the drama, or how I allowed my anger to get me arrested, but I’ve realized over the years you can’t dwell on the past… I have to let the PAST be exactly what it is.. THE PAST!! I have learned to allow every life experience to be the foundation of the path on which I shall walk; the road less traveled! Although the lights not as bright I was would like it to be at the end of the tunnel, that’s what gasoline is for!! How bright it shines is ALL UP TO YOU! You and nobody else but you, can control your destiny, your happiness, or will to succeed. Today and everyday moving forward, I choose “ME!” I choose to be happy, I choose to be full of joy & I choose to be authentic. I CHOOSE TO BE UNAPOLOGETICALLY, PERFECTLY IMPERFECTLY ME! Would you like to nominate an exceptional young woman who’s living dynamically despite adversity? Click here to submit your nomination!