I grew up in a loving, stable family. My parents worked hard to support and provide for me. I was a good student and loved playing sports. It was important for me to gain the approval of my parents, teachers, and coaches. Unfortunately, I guess I was more of a “follower” than a “leader” and in 9th grade I began experimenting with marijuana.

I continued dabbling with drugs in high school, but in 11th and 12th grade, what I had previously viewed as just “harmless partying on the weekends,” had actually grown into a full blown addiction to drugs. 

Now, I was a continual disappointment to my parents, and they were growing increasingly concerned about the choices I was making. 

I graduated from high school and wanted to go to college, but I ended up working a job and meeting a man that would lead me into one of the darkest times of my life. Our relationship was toxic. We drank, smoked weed, and, eventually, started using cocaine. He was very controlling and talked me into moving in with him. He was verbally abusive and it quickly became physical. Of course, I kept all of this from my parents, as to not cause them further embarrassment. 

In the midst of trying to hide the poor decisions I was making from my parents, I found out I was pregnant. In desperation, I moved back in with them, but I still felt trapped and afraid. I thought I could never be a “good mother,” so I aborted my baby; this left me with a wound not even the drugs could heal.

Somehow, in the midst of this insanity, I was able to hold down a job working at a local pharmacy. This was actually the perfect job for me, as I was able to sneak pills whenever I needed them. Numbing the hurt and pain in my life became a top priority for me. 

As an attempt to blanket the pain inside, I fell “in love” again, although I now know, this was just another codependent relationship. 

While I was still actively using drugs, I found out I was pregnant again. This time, I made the RIGHT DECISION, and my precious son, Maddox, was born on December 19, 2014. 

I had stopped using drugs and alcohol during my pregnancy, but soon after giving birth, I had to have my four wisdom teeth removed. The dentist prescribed Percocet for the pain, and it was just enough to AWAKEN THE SLEEPING GIANT WITHIN ME. 

Everyone in my life was telling me to “JUST STOP!” I wanted nothing more than to stop the speeding train I was on. 

I was now CRAVING the pills, stealing hundreds of them from my pharmacy job. Once a trusted employee, now a felon facing years behind bars, leaving my sweet Maddox without his Mommy. 

My train finally derailed, as I found myself in a courtroom facing up to 7 years behind bars. The court graciously agreed to let me enter a LONG TERM treatment facility. I am so grateful for this decision, as it gave me the opportunity to come to Grace Centers of Hope. Meeting daily with the staff, and interacting with the dedicated volunteers, showed me there were people who truly cared about me. 

God used Grace Centers of Hope and its supporters to rescue me from myself and my sin, restore my relationship with my family, and renew a spirit of HOPE in me as I now know I am forgiven and loved. Now… the future is bright for Maddox and me!