Not everyone is able to handle the stress of having a child at the age of 17, let alone balance it with school and an unsupportive father of the child. My mother, Susan Wooley-Laws, however, was able to do all of that, and then some. At 17, my mom gave birth to my sister, Lisa. I came along a lengthy 19 years later, “I like to say I have two, only, children. I love it,” Laws says. In those years between Lisa’s birth and my own, my mom was able to receive a degree in cosmetology, open two hair salons, and support my sister through not one, but two bachelor’s degrees. Lisa is now extremely successful and accounts some of it to our mother, “Before and after you [Lauren] were born, no matter the situation, mom always done her best to have us be successful and exceptionally happy. I think she’s doing a great job.” Through not wanting to college, to wanting to attend culinary school, to wanting to now go all the way to get my DVM she has supported me through it all. “I always have supported and am always going to support my kids no matter what. They’re my everything and I give my all for them 25/8,” Laws exclaimed. I am lucky to have inherited her altruistic traits and I am continuously inspired by her responsibility and dedication to our family. She is an independent, black, woman, and one of my biggest dreams in life is to become that role model that she has always been to me.