I was adopted at age 6. I struggled with alcohol beginning at the age of 12. I began getting in fights and was kicked out of school. I wasn't capable of holding down a job and knew my life had become unmanageable when I was fired from a gentleman's club because of my drinking and using. I was discharged unsuccessful from a DUI program and my best friend died of an overdose. I knew I had to change my life when every night I was scared for the next day. I finally entered into detox and then treatment, that's when I heard about Rea of Hope. I had no idea places like Rea of Hope existed. I arrived on my first day and it was so unbelievable. Everything was like a dream. I knew my whole life was about the change. The Rea of Hope has held me accountable to becoming a law abiding citizen. I make my bed every day and I can now make my own doctor's appointments. I have an amazing support group and I am blessed to have this opportunity to be in such a safe environment. I will forever be grateful to the Rea of Hope. They rescued me and showed me a new way to live.
I am 23 years old and I've spent most of my juvenile and adult life incarcerated. I never had much of a home life as a child, and come from quite a long line of family members who struggle with addiction. Life prior to coming to Rea of Hope has been something like a jigsaw puzzle. I gave birth to my son at 17 years old, sadly I found myself doing exactly what had been done to me to my own baby. It took a lot of loss to get me to the point of surrendering. This isn't my first time in recovery or my longest time in sobriety, but since coming to the Rea of Hope it is the first time I've been willing to go to any length to become the woman, mother and friend that God intended me to be. I feel so blessed to have a chance at this program, it is God's grace. I have also learned that family isn't always what your born into and I couldn't be more grateful for my family I have built in this program.
I was born in Charleston and I am the second youngest of six girls. As I grew older, I tried to grow up faster than I should and began to lash out in my home life and experiment with drugs and alcohol. A lot of my family is involved in addiction in one way or another, that's why I wanted to come to Rea of Hope. I needed to learn how to actually live sober and learn how to handle responsibilities that come along with being an adult. Most importantly, I want to be able to create a new life for my 5-year-old son. Being at the Rea of Hope has given me more than I was hoping for, it has given me my self-worth. It has given me not just hope, but faith that it will be okay and that I can recover and be a good mother. I am currently employed full time, actively working a program of recovery and I am a positive presence in my son's life today. All of this is more than I ever imagined I would accomplish this time last year, thanks to the Rea of Hope.
Growing up my mother hung around men who sold and did drugs. She also drank and did drugs. The first time I used was with my mother and I grew up thinking this was normal. It took the state removing my children from me, that finally made me realize it is not. My ex-boyfriend died of an overdose just weeks after we separated and I came to this program. The Rea of Hope has taught me that life is a wonderful thing, sober. Recently I picked up my 9-month chip and I have loved and been loved by a group of strong women. I do service work. I have a job. I have so much to be thankful for and today I live a life I'm proud of. I love helping others because it brings me joy. I owe it to the Rea of Hope.
I have struggled my whole life with addiction. I lived every day in chaos and insanity. I never loved myself or felt self-esteem or self-worth. I hurt and harmed everyone who loved and needed me, most of all my children. One day in 2016 all of our lives were changed forever when I made the decision to drink and drive with my children in the car and got in an accident. We were all physically ok, but I would see later how badly I had harmed and damaged my children mentally. I lost everything in seconds. My children, my freedom, my home, my vehicle. I plead to drug court which at first, I treated as a joke and only sat around feeling sorry for myself. I am grateful however because it led me to the Rea of Hope. When I first came to the program it was overwhelming and scary. I just kept telling myself to fake it 'til I made it. I did what was asked of me; got a job, a sponsor. But I was just going through the motions. After 3 months at the Rea of Hope, I had a moment of clarity and finally hit my rock bottom. That day I received a letter in the mail that my children had been adopted by my mom, which today I am grateful for but at the time I collapsed. It felt like my heart had been ripped from my chest. I cried and cussed and wanted to give up! That night, the strong beautiful women at Rea of Hope carried me when I couldn't carry myself. They held me and prayed for me and gave me so much support, like nothing I had ever known in my whole life. I know for a fact in my heart that if I hadn't been at the Rea of Hope when I got that letter I would have relapsed and probably died. I hit my knees and asked God to help me! Since then things are slowly getting better. The Rea has taught me independence, love, tolerance. They have made me see that I am worth it. Promises continue to come true in my life today and I am so grateful God led me to the Rea of Hope.