I grew up in a single parent home, with no clue who my father was. My mother and I did not have a very good relationship. She kept a roof over my head, food in my stomach, clothes on my back, but she never fed me emotionally. She worked the night shift, so that left me home alone at the age of 11. By the time I was in 8th grade, I was smoking pot on a daily basis and drinking. Not having any supervision from when I got off the school bus in the afternoon until 2 am, my house became the place to be. I began “partying” every day.
By my freshman year, I was hooked on cocaine. I found my independence at a young age, but with no foundation and no parental guidance, I became a delinquent. I was not going to school very often, and when I was there I was just rebelling against all authority. At the end of my freshman year, the court sent me to a transitional school. During that program, I finally met my father and went to live with him, but it was no better than when I was with my mother. He would take me to bars with he and my older half-sisters.
My junior year I found myself sent off once again to the same transitional school. I received my GED and got enrolled in college. I began using drugs again and by the end of the first college semester, my dream of becoming a Marine Biologist was just that, a dream. I quit and moved back home to the same people and same drug scene.
My rebellious attitude followed me into adulthood, and my addiction progressed. It ended up destroying my marriage and the only family I had ever known. I soon found myself booked in jail, facing a 6-year prison sentence.
I sought God on my own by immersing myself in the Word, but I needed a foundation for understanding what I was reading. Now I have been given that foundation through Teen Challenge of the Upper Cumberland. Since coming to Teen Challenge I have found the love of Jesus Christ. I was heart-broken and had lost everything, but now the Lord is restoring my once broken relationships. I give God all the praise for my salvation and for delivering me from the evil that I was once consumed by. Hebrews 4:16 says, “Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace so we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in the time of need.”