They saw something in me that I didn’t

I came to Grace House because I needed help—help from myself. I didn’t know who I was. I was like a kid lost without a parent. I had nowhere to turn and was hopeless. I thought I found myself in a bottle or in pills. Really, all I was doing was hiding my pain, my hurt that I never really knew I had. I’m able to take off those bandages and let the wounds heal. Take a look at my past and realize the wrong I’ve done.

I recently went to Manresa, a spiritual retreat, for a day and, I looked up in the sky and saw a bird flying. His little wings were flapping so fast, like he’s fighting so hard to get where he’s got to go. That’s me! I’ve got to give it all I’ve got. I’ve got to fight. I’ve got to flap my wings really hard to get where I want to go. I want to succeed in life. I want to be the mom that Jaida (my daughter) deserves. I want to love myself.

I started drinking and using drugs at the age of thirteen. It was what everyone was doing. It was the cool thing to do at that age. It made me feel like I was a part of something. It started off with just marijuana. Eventually it led to acid, pills, ecstasy, cocaine, and heroin. I never thought I’d stick a needle in my arm, but I did. My addiction worsened. They say marijuana is a gateway drug. For me it was.

I started getting in trouble with the law when I was fifteen, and I had Jaida when I was twenty. You’d think I would have straightened up after having Jaida, but I didn’t. When I was twenty-one, I was put on probation for marijuana and pills.  I messed up while on probation, so my parole officer revoked me.  I did fifteen months in the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women. I received my first DWI when I was twenty-three, my second when I was twenty-eight, and my third and fourth DWIs—within two weeks of one another—at the age of thirty-five. Thank God I never hurt anyone!

I’m at a different place in my life right now, a good place. I’m very grateful for Grace House. Through this program, I am learning the coping skills that I need to survive. I’m not running and hiding anymore. I’m able to face the fears and challenges that come at me. Relapse is a part of my story, but it doesn’t have to continue to be. Grace House has given me the tools needed to work on fixing me. I’m the Kitchen Lead at Grace House. I didn’t think that I would be able to do it, but they saw something in me that I didn’t. I’ve always doubted myself, but I now have faith because of Grace House. They say faith without work is dead, so I’m working!


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