In today’s Dirty South Club spotlight we give a little bit of shine to Ms. Sheshieka Isaac. I first worked with Ms. Isaac through an organization, Real Working Women of East Texas, where the goal was to honor and acknowledge hard-working women; mothers giving back to the community. She has a heart for people and she’s always been for uplifting and acknowledging the greatness in others – and we can dig it!
Read on as Ms. Isaac talks about success being a continuation, the motivation behind her Smile4Me program, why she never judges a book by its cover, and what she loves about the Dirty South!
What’s your name and what part of the Dirty South are you representin’:
My name is Sheshieka Isaac. I am representing Longview, Texas.
Tell us a little bit about yourself; like are you single/married, any kids, long-term dreams/goals etc:
I am a single mother of 5 beautiful and very active children, ages 18, 16, 15, 11, and 7. I work full-time as the Payroll Administrator on my job, as well as a new partner in S&S Residential Services LLC, and the Founder of the Smile4Me program. Other than that, I am busy being a team mom and running behind my active children. I have many goals to just build a better future for myself and for my children.
So what inspired your Smile-4-Me cause and why is it so dear to you:
You know…I didn’t realize that I was saying this for years. I have always tried to keep a smile on my face regardless of the many challenges I faced throughout my childhood and my adulthood and will continue to try to keep the smile for years to come. But it carries 2 meanings….sometimes a person going through something just needs a smile. They need you to smile for them. Then you got the encourager who is telling the person to “Smile for me”. However, when it all boils down to it, each one of them have a story of what they are going through which can help the next person.
The one issue that is dear to me is domestic violence so I wanted to use this to help raise awareness but in more of a sense of showing women and even men that there is a way out and examples of people who actually made the step to leave. They made the decision to leave and are still successful. So, while I am on a mission to help everyone to put a smile on each face which will in turn make another one smile, I am also using this platform to help encourage and build up those currently or ever involved in domestic violence.
You never realize what someone has gone through. You never realize the pain and suffering someone had to heal from while yet fighting to keep a smile. I know I am NOT the only one with a story. We tend to judge a book by its cover, but have no clue what’s in the pages. My mission is to find out what’s in those pages.
Have you always been a person dedicated to uplifting others; women in particular:
I believe I have and didn’t even realize it. A few years ago, we had an organization called the Real Working Women of East Texas, which was based on honoring and edifying women who work hard, take care of kids, and give to the community while looking good doing it. It was myself and 2 other women, Keeta King and Iesha Sanders. To this day, we have a bond of sisterhood like no other. I am always trying to help give advice to many of my friends who are going through something I have gone through. I know I have yet to see many things, but I try not to be judgmental of anyone going through major things.
With Smile-4-Me do you all do any community outreach or events to raise awareness for abuse and domestic violence or will you be doing any soon:
Right now, I am bringing an event back which was originally brought to you by the other organization I was involved in that I mentioned earlier, the Real Working Women of East Texas. The event is the MixNMingle with a Twist which is on July 21st. This time, a portion of proceeds will be given to Women’s Center of East Texas, and there will be a Smile4Me video featured in the video. Also, Smile4Me was a sponsor of a children’s fashion show event this year April 29th. Now this one is raising awareness to autism for autism month. Keep in mind, this program will be open to help any other organizations trying to make a difference.
What do you have to say to people out there who feel stuck in abusive relationships/situations:
I say, you CAN get out. You can make the choice to leave the situation and you can be successful. There is so much support out here to help those that want to make that choice. Organizations that provide shelter and food, as well as organizations that offer mental support. Sometimes you can plan ahead and sometimes you have to just move quickly. Don’t be ashamed because you are not the only one who has been in that position!
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received:
Oh my gosh…that is a hard one! I have received so much advice! My mamma used to always tell me, “Don’t nothing come to sleeper but a dream”
Any words of advice or encouragement for those who wish to follow in your footsteps in starting a cause like yours or otherwise:
My words of advice are to first of all, search within and be sure your intentions are right. Be sure it’s in line with God. Then, find your passion and focus on that. Don’t give up at all and never be afraid to ask for help or advice from those around you. Surround yourself with people who believe in you and your dream as well as believe in yourself. Silence all negativity, even your own thoughts that may creep up. Build a plan and educate yourself. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes because they are inevitable. Simply learn from the mistakes that you may make so that you don’t make them again. Be fearless!
How do you define success:
Success depends on the goals you have and it depends on the mind. It also depends on the person. For me, success is a continuation. I set small goals and try to reach those as well as long term goals. Therefore, you can reach success on a daily basis and feel successful everyday!
What are your plans or goals for Smile-4-Me or otherwise in the near future:
My plans for Smile4Me. So far, I will continue to have the Smile4Me calendars every year. We have an event coming up to raise money for the organization/program and it will also have a portion of the proceeds to go to Women’s Center. The Mix-N-Mingle event which will feature East Texas’ own. Also, there will be success stories posted on the facebook page from people overcoming and are successful now. The first story was posted in March. This is to continue pushing the theme and slogan of the program “There’s a story behind the smile”.
What do you like to do for fun:
What do I like to do for fun? I am a versatile type woman. I try to have fun anywhere! I have fun with watching my kids in all their activities. I like to hang out with my family and my friends. I love music and all styles of dance. I love to go walking and running on the track for fun I always gotta get some chuckles everyday!
What do you love most about the Dirty South:
I love the deep connection we all have in the Dirty South! Regardless, Dirty South has so many well rounded and great hearted people here. They are super loyal to who they love and you can’t find that anywhere else!
Where can the people learn more about your cause and support it online:
Eventually, I will have a website for the Smile4Me organization, still kinda in search of someone to manage it. For now, you can find Smile4Me on Facebook. You can contact by email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 430-558-4638.
Photos courtesy of PerfectTenn Photography
© 2017 C. Huey for Dirty South Club | D$C