This weeks guest is my new friend Tori Petersen. She currently resides in a small town in Minnesota, with her husband and their new baby boy. She works as a fitness instructor and a doula in her sweet little community. Tori grew up in the foster care system starting at the age of 4, and today she shares her story and gives insight into how that experience affected her childhood and her new life as a Mama and wife. 

Tori recounts the first time she was taken away from her Mama when she was only four years old and the imagery she still carries with her from that critical moment in her life. It’s nearly impossible to imagine the many layers of pain that surround a child entering foster care and  trauma involved in being removed from everything and everyone they know as they enter the foster care system, even when those very circumstances and people are unsafe for them to remain. It took a lot of courage for Tori to share and I’m so grateful for her honesty and transparency in sharing her story with us today. 

Tori went back to her biological Mom’s home for a period of time before being placed in 12 more foster homes between the ages of 12 and 18, never staying in one placement longer than 9 months at a time.

She shares about how she often felt like a burden to the families she was placed with and how that impacted her view of herself. Through the challenging times and complexities of that, she learned that everyone on earth has value, and now believes that we all are just looking for that simple smile or words of encouragement. She wants to promote a culture where people around the world can learn to LOVE PEOPLE RELENTLESSLY!

Tori says that for her is was through suffering, she became closer to Christ, and began to lean into Him through her pain. Tori credits her track coach, Scott, as one of her closest example of our Heavenly Father here on earth, and shares how his influence and belief in her played a critical role in her becoming a 5 time state championship winner in track and field, earning her a full ride scholarship to college. After high school, Scott and his family took her in and became her forever family, providing a place to call home and the loving support of the father and family she never had. 

She wants to break misconceptions around the foster care system, and is writing a memoir that will be out soon! Follow along her Instagram for updates and a sweet snippet into her life!


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