When you become a parent, your needs and wants get pushed to the back burner. Taking care of your kids becomes your number one priority. Many parents get so absorbed with caring for their children that they forget to take care of themselves, sometimes for years at a time.
For those with multiple children, it can be even easier to let your needs fall by the wayside while focusing on your kids.
Lately, the self-care movement has swept the internet. Whether we can thank the aptly dubbed Fab 5 on Netflix’s Queer Eye for our sudden interest in self-love, an upsurge of motivational Instagram accounts are behind it, or it’s all Oprah’s doing, many of us (myself included) are finally learning how to balance caring for our kids and making sure our own needs are are also met.
That balance, however, is essential. As parents, our needs must never supersede those of our kids. And consider this a PSA of sorts, but just in case you weren’t sure, “self-care” doesn’t include ingesting a fuck-ton of illicit drugs and passing out in bed with three of your children.
Unfortunately, that’s exactly what 28-year-old Heather Hall of West Monroe, Louisiana allegedly did on Thursday, March 12, leading to Ouachita Parish Fire Department personnel and sheriff’s deputies being dispatched on a report of a baby not breathing at 1134 Evergreen Street.
When first responders arrived, an unnamed female witness was on the kitchen floor, performing CPR on Heather’s infant daughter, RosaLee Foster. First responders took over, but, tragically, it was too late. According to a statement released by the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office, “The victim was located by deputies at the residence deceased.”
RosaLee would have been exactly ten months old that morning.
Deputies transported the three adults on scene to the OPSO annex to untangle the story. Evidently, earlier that morning, Heather’s boyfriend, Jeffery Snell, left the house and returned sometime later to work on a vehicle in the driveway. A few hours later, he received a phone call from Heather’s uncle, who asked him to wake Heather so she could go to the store for him.
When Jeffery went inside, he found Heather in her bedroom, asleep in her bed with her three young children. He told police that Heather was sleeping on her back with her legs on top of RosaLee, who was face down on the bed. When Jeffery tried to wake Heather, he realized RosaLee wasn’t breathing. As soon as Heather awoke, she snatched up the baby, ran to the kitchen, and “dropped” her on the floor, where the female witness, who told police she was outside when the baby was found, began performing CPR.
It is unclear whether Heather dropped the baby from a height or if that was simply the language she used to describe placing RosaLee on the floor.
Heather told police she did not remember if her legs were on top of RosaLee when she woke up or not. She did, however, admit to using meth on Tuesday and ecstasy on Wednesday night before climbing into bed with her three young children.
Child Protective Services investigators conducted a field urine analysis, which determined that Heather tested positive for four drugs. Meth, marijuana, amphetamines, and ecstasy were found in her system.
On Friday, Heather Lucille Hall was charged with second-degree murder in the death of ten-month-old RosaLee Deniece Foster. She is being held in the Ouachita Correctional Center on $200,000 bail.
The state of Heather’s face in her mugshot combined with the tragedy of RosaLee’s death paints a clear picture of the brutality of drug use. Compare her scabby, meth sore-laden visage with recent photos from her Facebook page, and it’s obvious that whatever Heather was doing to herself was detrimental.
Far more importantly, however, a ten-month-old girl is dead because of her mother’s selfish actions and lack of regard for the safety of her own children.
Speaking of children, the three who were in the home at the time did not comprise Heather’s entire brood; reportedly, including RosaLee, who was her youngest, Heather has anywhere from six to ten children in total, many (if not all) of them with different fathers. This woman is 28 years old. Facebook is rife with accusations that Heather purposely got pregnant over and over again to receive money from the state to support them, although that, of course, is impossible to prove. Some of those opinions were heavily flavored with racism. Everyone has an axe to grind and an overflow of opinions, especially when the death of a child is involved.
As far as I’m concerned, the only opinions that really matter right now, besides those of police and prosecutors, are those of RosaLee’s family. Her father, 26-year-old Royce Foster Sr., is understandably heartbroken over the loss of his little girl, who was born on his 25th birthday.
A GoFundMe has been set up to help Royce pay for his baby girl’s funeral expenses. RosaLee is scheduled to be laid to rest tomorrow.
To compound this tragedy, Royce’s mother, Reba, lost her husband, Rick, on March 6. Reba’s middle name, Deniece, was also given to RosaLee. This poor family… honestly.
According to Royce and his family members. he made several attempts to get Rosalie out of Heather’s home, including alerting authorities to the situation to no avail.
It remains to be seen how Heather will plead to the charge of second-degree murder. I would guess that her attorney, if and when she is assigned one, will call into question her mental competency and request a psychological examination. Heather herself has referenced being mentally ill a number of times on her own Facebook profile.
It appears Heather and Royce broke up on or around August 7, 2019, and since then, her Facebook profile has been a whole hot mess of bluster, weirdly framed selfies, jealousy, drama, and batshit insanity.
No matter what happens with Heather’s charges, we can’t let little RosaLee be forgotten. She only had ten months on this earth, but if her story can be a cautionary tale that inspires even one mother to overcome her drug addiction, then RosaLee won’t have died in vain.
Sleep well, little angel.
Sources: PEOPLE, The News Star, KNOE, NBC News, KLFY, Facebook