Forever Family: Meet Tazavion
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Tazavion joined our crew on a warm day in the late fall of 2019. We met him in the chaos of the Dixie Classic Fair in Winston Salem. We were swarmed with thousands of people, tons of fried food, carnival games, and long lines waiting to get on the ferris wheel. In the midst of all of this stood a calm, handsome pre-teen. He had on a nice clean, pressed shirt with a collar and bright white teeth that looked almost on display when he smiled. While we waited for the crew to unload all their gear and for us to figure out the logistics of tickets and schedules he stayed still while the other children we featured that day pelted me with questions or requests.
Tazavion and his faithful workers arrived early, and what struck me about this 12 year old is how he went nearly unnoticed all day because of how little attention he drew to himself. Since his arrival that day I noticed how he quietly kept to himself, he always waited his turn patiently, he never complained, and did not ask for a single thing all day. Our filming days provide fun opportunities for kids to engage and participate in experiences that every child should get to enjoy.
As we prepared for the upcoming filming day with Tazavion and several other children, our director was excited at the idea of going to the fair, eating cotton candy, corn dogs, and riding on the rides. However, one of the things that we do not always show is that there can be stretches of time where the children and workers have to sit and wait. There are a lot of technical aspects during filming that take a good deal of time and patience. For children from trauma one of the things you will hear is how many foster children can have a tendency to be impulsive and very active. These traits are seen frequently in children from trauma as a result of their pasts with neglect and abuse where they lived on high alert for so long, sometimes just trying to survive.
Sitting still, waiting their turn, and being quiet can be difficult at any age, especially at a vibrant fairground, so we try our best to keep our children constantly engaged and active. Tazavion was different. Instead of asking to ride more rides or asking to go first, or jumping in to say what fair food he wanted to eat, he just smiled quietly and waited. Tazavion was exceptionally polite, he sat still while his microphone was adjusted, he answered questions, and was the picture of compliance. When asked what ride he first wanted to go on he sweetly responded, “It doesn’t matter to me, I am good with anything.”
In all the questions we asked him about his future Forever Family I heard that same humble voice answer with a similar tone and cadence, “It doesn’t matter to me, I just want to be home.” Tazavion’s responses remained consistent, not wanting to draw attention, or list demands about what a perfect family would look like to him. Tazavion communicated that any ride was ok because he was thankful just to be at the fair, and any willing family would be a blessing because he would finally be home.
This article was written by Ashley McKinley. the Program Development Director and North Carolina Forever Families Coordinator with Seven Homes Inc.
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