Okay, get out your weeping rags people (everyone has a weeping rag, right?). This is the most heartbreaking but also uplifting story I’ve heard this holiday season. Jackie Turner, a college student from Rocklin, California is looking for what we all want for the holidays – a supportive family. And she’s looking for it on Craigslist, of all places.
Turner placed an ad on everyone’s purveyor of filth and free end tables looking to rent a supportive family for the holiday season. I’ll give you a moment to cry deeply into your weeping rags (this is a THING, right?). Her ad reads:
“I am looking to rent a mom and dad who can give me attention and make me feel like the light of their life just for a couple of days because I really need it.”
Turner comes from a rough background. According to her interview with Rocklin’s local news station, News 10:
“On the outside, it looks like I’m the American dream kid,” the 26-year-old said. “But I have a back story that most people wouldn’t believe if they looked at me today.”
Turner says that she was sexually, physically and emotionally abused as a child and spend years on the streets and in gangs. She was arrested a few years ago for grand theft auto and spent a year in jail, which led her to clean up her life and attend a camp for troubled youth. Now she is a presidential scholar at William Jessup University with a 4.0 grade average. But she lacks the one thing she says she really needs this time of year – a family:
“There’s still something deep inside of me. There’s this void, my biological parents aren’t here, and it’s kept this hole inside of me.”
The headline of her Craigslist ad read “I want to rent a mom and dad” and in it she said she would be willing to pay $8 an hour for them to
“Just to sit, just to listen,” she said. “Just to cry with me, no strings beyond that. I’ve never felt the touch of my Mom hugging me and holding me. I don’t know what it’s like to look in my dad’s eyes and feel love instead of hatred.”
Don’t you just want to reach through the computer and give her a hug?
Thankfully, hundreds of people have come forward to be there for her, free of charge. This is the best kind of holiday story there is. One with a happy ending.