Growing up, I hated myself and others.  I depended on other people and was always pushing them away.  I thought if I worked constantly and made high grades, at any cost, then I was good.  Once the pressure and stress increased, I sought solace in music, relationships, and then finally drugs.  I began spiraling out of control with a full-blown opiate addiction.

My first shot at treatment landed me at a Teen Challenge center at 18 years old; I left there because I thought I was different.  As my addiction progressed and every area of my life completely deteriorated and the 12 step rehabs and meetings were not working for me, I began to grasp at straws.  I knew at that point that I needed a miracle.

I arrived at Adult and Teen Challenge of the Upper Cumberland completely hopeless, delusional, and very angry with God and myself.  Since being here, I have learned the Holy Spirit is real, God keeps His promises, He means what He says in His Word, He is not a respecter of persons, and Jesus stills performs miracles.  I have learned about myself – that I need simple.  I am not crazy, other people deserve grace, mercy, and forgiveness, I need other people, and I can now be the mother God intended me to be.  I have been delivered from the desires of drugs and alcohol, and I am learning the true purpose of life.  I am learning to listen more than I talk, and trust more than I have in the past.  I no longer will compromise or make the same mistakes.  I actually believe in Jesus and have a hope and peace that can not be bought or stolen.  Also, I am now willing to make things right, as much as possible, with those I have harmed.

Now that I have committed my life to Christ, I am healthier, my son Braylon is happy to come see me, and we play together without fear.  I see opportunity where I used to see only problems, and I now know I am loved.  In the future, I plan to be a better mother to my son, further my education, work on healthy relationships with others, and continue to serve God wherever He leads me.  The verse I stand on is Matthew 6:33, “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you”.