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Sharyl G. – mentor

“I love how it takes both of us to say ‘Yes!’ again and again as we build a strong connection”

I taught school for 30 + years, children ages 8-10. I know that having a family member in prison is terribly discombobulating for children. I decided when I retired from teaching I would take the training for mentoring a woman coming out of prison.  Crystal and I were matched in November 2011, and since then, we’ve developed a real friendship.

At first, we met at Mercy Connections. It’s like a family setting, and we felt comfortable there and welcome.  I am challenged to be my best, inclusive self. I love the bridge building, how it takes both of us to say “Yes!” again and again as we build a strong connection. We help each other, we count on each other.

We have presented together at mentor orientation. People can ask us questions.  It’s good for us to think on our feet about what makes this friendship work.

About my book You Can’t Lock Up the Moon: I met Crystal when I had written 2/3 of the first draft.  I invited her to be a reader. I gained from her insight and detailed knowledge about incarceration. She was a tremendous encourager to keep going right through publication. I am humbled and moved by the possibilities she shows me every day.