Hi, my name is Laura and this is my story:
I grew up in an upper-middle-class neighborhood of Oakland County. My family was wonderful. Who would have thought that simple weekend hangouts and drinking with friends could or would consume my entire life, literally?
My social weekend drinking led to daily drinking and then ultimately drinking 24/7. I was a train wreck colliding into another locomotive every moment of every day. Drinking had become my God for so many years. The destruction of drinking cost me my family and friends and shattered everything I knew into a million pieces. In my desperation to try and place those shattered pieces back together, found myself in 14 rehabs, 6 psych wards, and countless trips to Beaumont Hospital.
Suffering from pancreatitis 3 times, C. diff (a serious bacterial infection of the colon) from sleeping in the trunk of my car and renal kidney failure that almost killed me. I had pneumonia over and over and despite all of these health concerns, I was still out there drinking. The last six months of my addiction were the darkest and worst times. It was during this time that I started smoking crack, hanging around people and places that were very dangerous.
Doctors told me every single time I came into the hospital that I was going to die. Honestly, dying felt like the only solution left of getting out of my addiction. My attempt at suicide included drinking antifreeze…………………………. Fortunately, my story didn’t end there.
It amazes me how God hears us even when we don’t realize how we are calling out to Him. God had something in store for me and was working in and through me in ways that I had absolutely no idea.
I enrolled in Grace Centers of Hope and their 1-year life skills program. I whispered to myself that if God can’t help me, surely no one can. I put all of my trust and faith in Him. I literally walked by faith and not by my sight and surrendered completely to Him.
Through this amazing program, I learned how to be patient and available to God both through prayer and by listening to God speak. These were the building blocks of security and structure that my spirit needed. I learned how to forgive everyone for the pain they caused me and to give them to God, as they are his children too. I learned that God did not make me an alcoholic or force me to do anything that would jeopardize my life in the way that I did to ease my pain. I learned how loving God is. I learned that I am a daughter of the most high God and He would never want me to live in that kind of pain. Weekly counseling sessions here at Grace helped me work through all of the shame and guilt I held deep inside. I learned how to love myself again and realize how worthy I am. The staff here at Grace Centers of Hope, helped me realize that I was fearfully and wonderfully made and all of my feelings of doubt, hopelessness, and resentment were clearly the lies of the enemy who comes to kill, steal and destroy.
After my completion of the program, I was offered a job at Grace to work in the women’s emergency shelter. Wow…..God used all of my experiences to help other women escape those same feelings of unworthiness, shame, and guilt and be a living, walking testimony to God’s great grace. 2 years later, I was transferred to the Women’s 1 year life skills program as a case manager. Do you know what I love the most about my job? I watch Christ show up over and over again in other people’s lives who have struggled with addiction and witness firsthand how God makes a way when they couldn’t.
I am 6 years sober and my life is amazing and it’s anything but dull. When you are a warrior for God, His plans are unpredictable and awesome every single day. I thank God every day for the trials and tribulations that I have faced and would never want that part of my life removed, because it was there in Lodebar that He brought me into this incredible new life with Him.
NEVER LOSE FAITH IN WHAT OUR GOD CAN DO! He takes the IMPOSSIBLE and makes it POSSIBLE.