Even though Chloe’s* family didn’t have much money when she was growing up, Christmas was always special. “We always had a tree and presents,” she says.

In 2011, she got the best Christmas present ever when she found out she was pregnant.

Nine months later, an emergency C-section brought her little girl into the world. Three days after leaving the hospital, Chloe knew something was wrong.

Her husband rushed her to the doctor where they discovered that her stitches had ruptured internally. He was forced to take unpaid time off work to care for her and their newborn.

No Christmas at All

That first Christmas as a family wasn’t anything like the joyful holiday Chloe had planned. “We didn’t really have a Christmas. No tree. No presents.” Chloe said. “We were just trying to make ends meet.”

Then, as winter started barreling into Everett, her husband lost his job. “He ended up running out of leave,” Chloe told us. “His work said, ‘You can either quit today or we’ll terminate you.’”

With no income, the bills piled up. “We were trying to keep up with the apartment payments, but we just couldn’t,” Chloe said.

“It was scary,” she said. “We tried to find him something else, and talked to the apartment managers — but they weren’t willing to work with us. It was really heartbreaking.”

Right as they were trying to figure out how to keep their home, Chloe found out she was pregnant again. “I was trying so hard to be happy, but everything was caving in around us,” she says.

A week later Chloe and her family were homeless.

“This wasn’t a lifestyle choice,” Chloe says. “It’s not something I want.”

They stayed with friends for a while, but wore out their welcome before they could get back on their feet. When they first came to the Mission, Chloe was shocked. “It wasn’t what I expected. They’ve made it really accommodating. You can forget you’re homeless for a little bit.”

In less than two months at the Mission, things have started turning around. Her husband found a job. Chloe is healthy. Their children are thriving. And they recently applied to get into an apartment. All they needed was a little time to rebuild their lives. That’s what friends like you gave them!

The safe shelter friends like you provided gave Chloe and her family the footing they needed to rebuild their shattered life. This year, they hope to have their own Christmas tree.

Thank you for caring for people like Chloe and her family!

*Name changed to protect his privacy.