A Mother’s Pride

Cara Staff

To the thousands who come to Cara each year to transform their lives, Jesse Teverbaugh is a figure of strength and compassion; a father or brother to those who are deeply in need of family. But to one person – Joyce Teverbaugh-Teasley – he is a son.

To anyone who has gone through Cara’s Transformations training or sat in the Motivations circle, Jesse is a force of nature. Equal parts tough and loving, high energy, and quick on his feet with the perfect mantra to inspire a room. Joyce remembers a different Jesse.

“As a child, Jesse had an older brother he admired, and they didn’t need anyone besides themselves. Through this, Jesse became dependent on his brother and I don’t think it was the best for his growth emotionally. He was introverted.”

Joyce describes herself as a nurturing person with an affinity to help people. She raised her children in a similar manner as she was, but says Jesse always seemed to march to his own drum. The early signs of a leader were showing, but the path wasn’t clear yet. “Jesse always wanted to help people. He always had that in him. But he was determined to do what he was going to do.”

She recalls when Jesse faced his own hardships as a young man. How she saw him losing himself to addiction, negativity, and other demons he was battling. And she describes seeing the light return as he sought counseling and treatment and when he first came to Cara.

“He came to Cara and he didn’t want to leave. The light was coming back in him. He was for real and he was catching up on what he lost.”

Joyce accompanies her son, Jesse, to the 2019 Cara Gala.

Joyce says it’s amazing to see what her son has accomplished in his role of Director of Student & Alumni Affairs at Cara, and the countless lives he’s touched.

“When I see him sharing his life and what he went through…He has had to share his struggle thousands of times and it’s a testament to his strong will.”

For Joyce there are no words to describe the full admiration she has for her son and the work he does or the lives he’s impacted. She simply says she is a proud momma – and she reveals that she, too, uses his story to motivate and inspire others.

“When I see someone who is going through a struggle, I ask them, ‘Why? Why are you struggling?’ I share my son’s story and I let them know there’s hope.

More than 100 strong moms are currently transforming their life and their family at Cara (and hundreds more are among our alumni). Click here to read more stories of our hard-working moms!

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