My Story-Truth by Juanita
Growing up wasn’t your typical life for me. My parents were deep in addiction and also sold drugs. The family from the outside looking in was what everyone thought they wanted. A big house, new cars, boats and vacations but it was all false. I call it “The Family Portrait!” Every Sunday, I would ride my bike to church and I loved school. I did all the after-school activities and events. These were the only places I felt safe. Every summer I would get to be with my grandma who I considered my mom. Unfortunately, we would move away to Alaska and the summers with grandma stopped. By 15 my mom and step-dad divorced and we were back in Montana. My mom never really knew how to parent and tried to be a friend instead. She is the one who introduced me to crank (which is now meth) at age 15 and then cocaine at 16. In those years, I came to believe everyone’s parents were that way and it was normal. At some point I realized that it wasn’t normal, or even right, but addiction had me. I bought my own tanning salon and my life again seemed picture perfect. This was so far from the truth. I sank myself and I embezzled money from my business partner. I turned myself in and demanded to be prosecuted which eventually happened. I still couldn’t stop my drug use and would face revocation for not only this but assaulting my sister. This led me to 8 1/2 years of continued sobriety. I got married and had my 3 children. Drugs weren’t done for me sadly and the drug use led to divorce. Feeling like I had nothing to live for, I dove even further into my addiction and would eventually be charged with drug distribution. I was again put on probation. I would end up in jail and then drug court but each time I completed, I would start using again. I couldn’t stop so I went to treatment. My use had really increased by this time. I used the excuse that my grandma and mom both had cancer to continue to use. But honestly, I would have used any excuse. On February 26th, 2018, I received a DUI and that day I lost custody of my two boys. Two and a half weeks later, my grandmother passed away. This was followed by my mother dying 30 hours later in March of 2018. I was fortunate probation allowed me to be there when they passed. I then entered DUI court. I don’t take credit for the next year of sobriety or surviving any of it. If it weren’t for God, I wouldn’t have stayed sober or alive. On March 4th, 2020 a month after getting off probation, I relapsed and lost everything to my addiction again. I became homeless in June of 2022. On July 1st, my desire to use was removed from me. I ended up applying for treatment that day and was expecting I would have to wait weeks for a bed date. God had other plans and on the 5th of July, I was accepted into RCM in Martin City, MT. I really hadn’t noticed the desire to use was removed until about halfway through treatment. I applied to several places and was gracefully accepted by Peggy’s House at A Ray of Hope. I went to a church celebration I was invited to and on a whim, I was baptized. I am so HAPPY that I made that choice. GOD IS GOOD and I am continually being blessed. I love the family life here at Peggy’s House. I am grateful every day for this new life.