'God had a plan,' divorced mom says
BY MIKE AVERILL World Staff Writer
Wednesday, December 02, 2009
12/02/09 at 7:50 AM
Things started unraveling for Tracy Hardy about two years ago.
She was going through a divorce from her husband, whose drug use forced her to shut down her day-care business, she said.
During all of that, she was pregnant with her son Zyron Shaw, and she learned that he had a hypoplastic right ventricle and would have to undergo open-heart surgery after birth.
"It was devastating," Hardy said. "When you hear 'heart,' you think death. That's what keeps you alive."
In addition, her youngest daughter, Samiya Wade, 8, was born with Erb's palsy and has had to have several medical procedures and extensive therapy since birth.
After the divorce and Zyron's birth, Hardy was unable to work because she had to spend her time caring for her children.
She also has two older children, Randale Anderson, 17, and Jasmine Jones, 19.
And with no job, she has no insurance.
The kids are covered by Soonercare. But Hardy, a type 2 diabetic, has to pay for all of her own prescriptions and medical expenses.
Last year, on the day Zyron got out of the hospital, Hardy went to sign up her children for the Angel Tree, but registration was closed.
The family spent that Christmas at Hardy's mother's house because she couldn't afford to keep the heat on.
"My oldest were used to having everything they've wanted. They've never said a thing," Hardy said.
"On Christmas they opened their little gifts just like it was three years ago. My older children never complained."
In January she lost her home to foreclosure, and the family was basically homeless for 30 days, staying with friends and relatives.
"I cried every day. I just never thought it would get to this point," she said.
Then Hardy lost her car after she fell eight months behind on the payments.
"Getting a divorce was not a problem. The problem was losing the day care because of drugs. Not my drugs; my ex-husband's drugs," she said. "But God had a plan. He knew I was going to have to take care of this child."
Zyron has to have another heart procedure later this month and another surgery in the spring.
Hardy still juggles bills, turning off the cell phone for a month to pay another bill and making other sacrifices.
"I made a vow not to stand in line and ask people to pay for me," she said. "This has been a humbling experience."
About the Neediest Families Fund Drive
The Neediest Families
Fund Drive was established
in 1928 to help Tulsa’s poorest
families find some peace
and comfort for the holidays
and the coming year.
This year’s goal is to raise
$300,000 by Christmas Eve.
In 2008, the fund collected
Each Sunday, Wednesday
and Thursday through the
holiday season, the Tulsa
World will spotlight families
chosen by The Salvation
Army to receive assistance
through this year’s fund.
None of the money raised
is used for administrative
costs, and cash is not given
directly to the families.
Instead, The Salvation Army
issues vouchers for specific
To help families such as
the one featured today, send
a check or money order to
the Neediest Families Fund
Drive, in care of the Tulsa
World, P.O. Box 21920, Tulsa,
Donations are tax-deductible,
and donors can be
Mike Averill 581-8489
Tracy Hardy (second from left) sits with her children, Samiya Wade (from left), Randale Anderson and Zyron Shaw. Samiya was born with Erb's palsey, and Zyron has had multiple open-heart surgeries.MICHAEL WYKE/Tulsa World