Please Help Shelley & Siam

Update posted by Michelle Smith On Nov 20, 2016

Hello friends. Here we are in November, seasons changing, Siam growing, and me rebuilding, in a world that looks more and more like another planet than simply a different country. I'm grounding but also realizing just how far outside of this type of existence we have been. I miss the freedom of simple island days and the way that connecting with motivated students fueled me, and most of all, I miss the company of like-minded souls. But we are here and now and so I am doing what I need to do. I have experienced much healing since I moved us here to safety and I'm happy for that. I teach a few classes and I've taken a seasonal job as well. I'm searching for a place that feels right for us to live and exploring the potential for beginning a Mysore program next year. It's not easy to work out the details of setting up life here as a single mom supporting my son alone, but it's another level of putting me in touch with the reality of what so many others are struggling with in life. I think I our challenges always make us better teachers in the long run, and often better people too. I am more grateful than ever for the blessings Siam and I have here: Siam's health and happiness, our family's home until we can afford our own, the help we have received from our community for our legal bills, and my own renewed strength and faith. I wake every day with my son in my arms and feel deep gratitude that we are safe and we are together. Everything else will come in time. It's been a challenging time but we are receiving the support we need.


We have just one week left on our fundraiser and we do still need more assistance. I have been avoiding everything court-related for several weeks while we had a break between scheduled legal proceedings, but now it is time to prepare again. Siam's father had been speaking of moving here to Michigan and sharing custody, and I hoped we could settle things this way. But he has not yet agreed or announced definite plans and so everything is still pending with several more court appointments coming up in the next few weeks. I am so grateful for the contributions we have received to assist us so fa and I pray we will continue to receive what we need.


Would you please donate or share our story if you feel called to help us through this? Every contribution is meaningful and greatly appreciated. Thank you 😊

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Update posted by Michelle Smith On Oct 24, 2016

Hello Friends,

We have only 2 days left here on our fundraiser. I’d like to share an update on where we are and what’s going on. We are very grateful for the generous contributions we have received here, and we do still need more help, so I will continue to post and ask you to support us if you can!

September was full with many court dates, and now we have a break. The international proceedings have been put on hold as we attempt to come to an agreement here in the US. Nothing is settled, but I am hopeful that we will be able to reach a resolution and put the stress and strain of legal proceedings behind us by the end of the year. Personally, I’m happy to see so much growth and healing in myself through this process, but I’m also impatient for it to be over. Its exhausting, and I can see that no matter who “wins,” we all lose through this fighting. Our time, our energy, our money, our joy. Our precious daily life. I’m thankful for the years of yoga and meditation practices which are supporting me in being comfortable with the uncomfortable, inside and out, through this process. But still, part of the reason I haven’t been promoting this fundraiser recently is that I simply haven’t had the energy to give to it. I feel depleted and sensitive after the intensity of the September proceedings and some other recent events, and as I move through this I have been reserving my energy for maintaining a comfortable, stabile, and loving environment for Siam, caring for myself, and for giving what I can in the few yoga classes I am teaching here. We can only do so much.

Last week I lost a dear friend to suicide. This is heartbreaking, and I now feel a deep compassion and empathy for anyone who has lost a loved one this way. This news hit me really hard, not only for the loss of my oldest girlfriend, but also bringing a profound realization of how much loss I have experienced this year. It has cost us so dearly to go through this experience and to try to find safety and support coming out of it. Many blessings are here for us daily, and I do see and appreciate them so much. But there have been enormous losses too. My close friend was going through a challenging time and I wish I had been more present to better support her. She pulled into herself, but with everything I am going through, I haven’t had much more to give to others either. I take care of my son, I continue to heal myself, and I deal with the complicated legal processes. I am teaching a bit, and I work to remain patient as I accept the reality of this present moment and wait for legal issues to be resolved, for emotional wounds to be healed, and for the freedom to begin to rebuild our life in a new and better way. I was too consumed these past months with getting through my own struggles to give my friend the support I would have liked to have given her. Now I suddenly find I will never have that chance again. Perhaps it can never be said or heard too many times: seize this day, my friends, and care for the people you love while you have the chance... even when it feels you don't have much to give. I now know I could find so much more to give her if she were here another day.

On a very positive note, my experiences have helped me to finally realize what cause I will support when I have my own business one day: I will offer programs to honor and empower women and girls. Those of you who have known me a long time know my dream of opening a yoga center also included the idea to create a nonprofit, or at least, to give a substantial part of our proceeds back to supporting the needs of our community in some way. I now know where I want to focus on helping, and I hope I will be able to help to make a positive change toward breaking the cycles of domestic violence and abuse, and making our world a safer happier place. Silver linings :)

Our legal fees still exceed the money we have raised here so far, and we willl have more to come. Would you please continue to donate or share our story to help us meet our needs, so we can get through this time and begin to build our new life and next offering? Every single contribution truly helps and is so greatly appreciated!!!

Thank you Friends!

Love Shelley & Siam xo

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Update posted by Michelle Smith On Oct 05, 2016

10 days in... we are so touched and delighted by the kind support we have received here! We've been through more court dates since I created the fundraiser, and it is an enormous relief to know I can now pay the lawyers when the next invoices come. I am still praying the future will lead us to an easier and more amicable resolution to these issues, but, I'm also deeply grateful to feel we are receiving what we need in this moment. The financial support is such a blessing, and the kindness and generosity we have received from our global community of friends and family has deeply touched my heart. Thank you friends, truly, thank you so much!!!

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Update posted by Michelle Smith On Sep 27, 2016

Day 1 and WOW we are already 20% to our goal!!! Big thanks and big love to every one of you for your kind thoughts, uplifting words, and generous support. I thought receiving this money to help us would be an incredibly valuable gift... but now I realize the even greater blessing is the feeling of love and support I am receiving from you. My heart is full of love and gratitude as I am reminded of the power of goodness all around me. Thank you friends xo

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Good luck Shelley and thank you for being an inspiring teacher

Emma Steele

Backed with $10.00 On Nov 26, 2016

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Love and prayers to you dear Shelley and Siam.

Maureen Cosgrove

Backed with $100.00 On Nov 25, 2016

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Jennifer Olaughlin

Backed with $50.00 On Nov 25, 2016

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Anonymous

Backed On Nov 25, 2016 Amount Hidden

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Guest

Backed with $50.00 On Nov 24, 2016

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Stacey Memije

Backed with $20.00 On Nov 24, 2016

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Anonymous

Backed with $25.00 On Nov 24, 2016

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Anonymous

Backed with $50.00 On Nov 20, 2016

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Guest

Backed with $15.00 On Nov 08, 2016

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Guest

Backed with $10.00 On Nov 05, 2016

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