Savannah Chrisley is getting candid about the struggles she’s faced caring for her brother, Grayson, 16, and her niece, Chloe, 10, amid her parents’ prison sentences. Savannah opened up about how life has changed and what caused her to have a “full-on breakdown,” during the latest episode of her “Unlocked With Savannah Chrisley” podcast.
“Right now, where I’m at with Chloe and Grayson and my story… I had a conversation with my dad and he said, ‘This is going to be the hardest, but most rewarding thing you’ve ever done.’ I’m starting to see that. It’s so crazy because I went from a place, sitting in the same chair thinking about how mad I was at God, ‘Why would you allow all these things to happen?’… Now I’m in a place of such peace,” Savannah said of the ups and downs she’s experienced since her parents, Todd and Julie Chrisley, reported to prison to serve their combined 19-year sentences. In November, Todd, 53, was sentenced to 12 years and 16-months’ probation, and Julie, 50, was sentenced to seven years and 16 months’ probation, after they were convicted on federal tax evasion charges in June.
“With Chloe and Grayson, they need to see peace and calmness,” she continued. “We need to figure out healthier ways to cope with things and deal with things. Even if it’s just little things, I’m trying to implement because I’m not their mom. I’m not their dad. I’m their sister. I want to stay in that role as sister, but it’s hard when you’re in the role of parent and discipline.”
While Savannah said she’s trying to parent both Grayson and Chloe, she’s also “grieving the loss of parents” and struggling to fill that role of “mother” in their lives.
“I’m grieving the loss of parents. Of a life I used to know,” the 25-year-old TV personality shared. “After visiting my parents this weekend, I know what my purpose is going to be, and my family’s purpose is going to be when we get out of this.”
“The other night, I had a full-on breakdown. I was trying to find Chloe proper clothes to go and visit my parents and find her hair stuff. I just sat down on the floor and started crying,” Savannah added. “I am not my mother. How am I going to do this? I don’t feel that I am worthy or capable enough of doing the job she’s done for all her life.”
Her efforts haven’t gone unnoticed, with Savannah sharing that Chloe commended her aunt for the job she’s been doing in Todd and Julie’s absence.
“I was sitting there, and the next day Chloe said, ‘You’re doing a pretty good job. You made me ramen noodles last night,'” she recalled before sharing one of the family’s new plans. “From here on out, every Sunday we’re going to plan our meals for the week and you guys tell me what you want for dinner, and we’ll get the groceries for the week, and you’ll know every night what you’re going to eat.”
Despite the struggles, and the prayers that seemingly have gone unanswered, Savannah said knowing her parents are at peace has given her a semblance of calm as well.
“The only thing that’s turned my mindset around is seeing both of my parents right now sitting in federal prison camps and still having so much peace,” Savannah said. “My dad said for the first time in his life, he’s felt a level of peace he’s never felt before. I went this past weekend and saw both my parents. I was sitting there, and I’ve never felt the presence of Jesus more than sitting in that room.'”
Since their conviction, Todd and Julie have been vocal about filing an appeal, and holding on to their faith in God as they work through the appeals. In their final “Chrisley Confessions” episode before reporting to prison, the couple assured their listeners that they will hear from them soon.
“We love each and every person that calls in, each and every person that considers themselves a fan,” Todd noted at the end of the episode. “You will hear back from us soon. Good luck and God bless.”
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