100 Year Stories > Brittany Rodriquez

Brittany Rodriquez

Former Resident

A family of four smiling together in front of a festive christmas tree and holiday decorations.

My Story

I arrived at Murphy Harpst when I was around 14 years old. I had been to group homes, foster homes, and hospitals since I was 8 years old, over 40 placements, and thought, “this place is no different from the others. I arrived very guarded but as I was doing intake I was introduced to my therapist, Miss Ginger Bryant, who seemed to really care about me and my well-being. It was almost like an instant connection I made with her and she probably was unaware of how much I trusted her already. I remember first walking into the intake house and meeting the staff. It was unlike other homes I walked into, they sat down with me and asked me about myself, my likes and dislikes, they went over my medication with me and helped me understand what each medication was for and how much I took. Until that moment I had honestly no idea why I was taking the medication and what the purpose was. It hit me that this place was different from everywhere else I’ve been.

Weeks went on and I started to open up more; I was learning I could trust people around me. I was moved to the girl’s cottage. I got a little overwhelmed moving over there and definitely made some mistakes but I was never pushed away. Ms. Becky always held me accountable for my actions but she also showed compassion and that she wanted the best for me.

My favorite days were the equine therapy days. I had never had the opportunity to be around horses let alone ride on one. Being down there taught me responsibility and patience; it was like an escape from all that had ever gone wrong. I loved the days I got to love on Apple the Appaloosa. Recreation days were always fun as well. Mr. Tim seemed like the dad so many of us never had. He was so outgoing and encouraged us all to try different things and taught us that even if we weren’t good at something, if we work at it we can excel. I was finally somewhere I felt truly cared about me and didn’t just throw me away when I made mistakes.

My favorite memory of all was when it was Homecoming and all the high school girls were excited to go, but unfortunately, one girl made a big mistake and none of us ended up being able to go to homecoming. I was so disappointed. Homecoming night came and I remember a knock on my bedroom door. It was Miss Gigi! She had brought all of her own dresses from high school and let me pick whichever one I wanted to wear, she did my hair and make-up and took me around the campus and took pictures of me. I had never felt so beautiful or so loved by someone. It was a moment that I will never forget and still brings a tear to my eye at nearly 37 years old now.

I truly believe if God didn’t place Murphy-Harpst in my life at 14 that my whole life would be different than it is now. I’m a proud mother of 2 amazing kids that are both in high school. I’ve been married for 18 years, and we’ve been able to build a beautiful life together. Without the love and compassion shown to me by the Murphy-Harpst staff I would have never been able to open my heart and mind up to a different way of thinking, living, and making smart choices. I am forever grateful for this beautiful place that I once called home.

Share Your Story

As we celebrate our centennial, we reflect on the stories that shape us…including YOURS! Our collective journeys have had a lasting impact over these 100 years. Whether you’re a donor, team member, former resident, volunteer, or witnessed lives changed by Murphy-Harpst, share your story with us!

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