How Mamabird Interviews will change lives - Janine
Who Am I?
I am Janine Delores Torres Morales. I am a proud and strong indigenous, chicana, dine woman. I am a mother to a strong willed daredevil of a daughter and a wife to a dapper, courageous soldier. I am not only defined by my motherhood or how well I run my household though. What only some may know is that it was originally my goal to become a soldier before my husband. I was 2 weeks away from graduating BCT (basic combat training) before my goal was derailed by my 25% curved spine. One year before deciding to join the Army, I was an undergrad at University of Northern Colorado. During my second month of my freshman year, I was in a horrific car accident that left me bed ridden for three months. Due to undiagnosed ADHD, severe depression, anxiety, and pain medication my grades fell and my goals derailed once again. When I was younger I looked at leaving school to focus on my mental health as a weakness, I looked at being medically discharged from the army as embarrassing. As I’ve matured I have grown to learn acceptance and kindness towards myself. I learned to look at my “failures” as lessons that I have learned from. I've also learned to be more patient with myself (when you have ADHD that part is especially important). When I am asked to define myself now, I define myself with my unrelenting ability to create new paths for myself that lead to happiness and personal growth. I am defined by my genuine, empathetic, caring, loving, and patient spirit. I am also a rockstar mom and wife!
Why are these Interviews Important?
In 2015 I was 16 years old, living in my own teenage world focused on my grades, running track, my boyfriend, my friends, etc. My priorities weren’t with my family because when I was young, I believed that my world was invincible. Well, my world was absolutely rocked when I received a phone call from my mom while I was at work. She was telling me that something bad had happened and my dad was in the intensive care unit at Denver General. My initial reaction was to think that there was nothing wrong because my dad was in his mid 40’s living his best life. Then my mother told me that the doctors were saying he was brain dead. That’s when it hit me that my dad, who I had only spoken to once in the past week, was no longer here. He passed away soon after. My dad was a kind man, he had the best humor, and he had lived so much life in such a short time. He was big on taking pictures to make memories last. Now that he is gone and now that I have children of my own I wish I had more to show them of their Grandpa John. An interview of my dad would be invaluable. An interview of your living loved ones will someday be considered invaluable as well.
How will making good money change my life? (How will it change my family's life?)
When I was a kid I always dreamed of helping my mom buy a big, baby blue (her favorite color) house with a wrap around porch and big windows so she could show off her Christmas tree. I grew up and realized how hard I would need to work to be able to buy her a house. Hard work has never deterred me though, I have always been down for a challenge. What does deter me is repetitive and boring work. Being an interviewer for Mamabird Interviews is constantly a joy and is always refreshing. I’ve been given the honor to meet and learn from some amazing people so far. I am challenged daily to grow and be my best self. There is never a boring day with my team and with my clients I interview. Whether it's inspirational conversations we have or even sharing a laugh makes my day brighter. Before joining Mamabird, I never considered myself a business woman, but with mamabird I believe in what we stand for and it’s not a challenge seeing myself in a different light. I find myself more willing to put myself out into the world and work hard so I can someday afford to buy my mom a big, baby blue house. I hold so much pride in what I do and I care deeply about the lives I affect. Clarke says that if you enjoy what you do, you never work a day in your life.
America has a stigma about sharing personal finances with other people. Most Americans consider that to be too much information. I am here to break that stigma. I believe honesty is the best policy and I want ya’ll (I've lived in San Antonio, Texas for about 2 years and I say ya’ll and I refer to most people as ma’am or sir) to know where your investment in me will be going.
Currently, my husband is our family's “breadwinner”. Due to the pandemic, I am able to contribute $50 a week to my family's bank account. Prior to the pandemic I was babysitting full time while still being able to care for my own child while making around $600 a month. $600 a month is significant when for a while I was making zilch! My husband and I were able to start saving for our daughters future education and we set out on a goal to become more financially literate. We are learning to look at money as a tool instead of a way to get a dopamine hit. Just because we are in the middle of the pandemic and I am not able to bring home more money doesn't mean the learning ends. When I start earning money again, I will be saving again. I am learning where to place my money to allow it to grow over time. I will be investing in my own education, my daughters education, and I will be able to save for my future resource center. I still have so much to learn about finances and how to use my money effectively but what's important is that I am constantly learning.
What will I do when doors are open for me?
I’m learning to take everything one day at a time and one step at a time. With ADHD, it’s very easy to get ahead of myself and jump the gun. I am very young and I have a lot to learn. My broad plan is to become a therapist, open up a resource center, and become involved in politics. I will teach about mental health, nutrition, politics, and I will create opportunities for marginalized young people. I want to build my first resource center in my home community, Montbello. I will donate to other resource centers and mentorship programs as well, such as The Boys and Girls Club in Montbello, Royal Family Kids Camp, and Friends First. My life has been touched by all of these entities and I will do my best to help them continue touching the lives of youth. Someday we will work on building a bigger community center for the children and families in Montbello. Once I build a strong foundation in Montbello with my resource center, I will expand to other cities and states. It would be amazing to create a world wide impact. I know there are people out there who align with my values and want to help create a better world with me. I believe the best way to build a better future is involving the youth in politics and creating safe spaces for the youth. Mamabird Media and Clarkes mentoring has helped me to really start thinking big in terms of my footprint. My confidence in myself has skyrocketed in such a short amount of time. I know that in a year, Mamabird media will be leaving a very large footprint on many people's lives in a good way. I look forward to continuing the good work with my wonderful and loved Teammates Areyana Proctor, Dan Clarke, and Yusura Ali. I look forward to uplifting, supporting, and growing with many more young women of color!