My mother being sick was very devastating. I loved her. I started taking some of her prescription pain pills. First it would just be, “I have a headache,” so I would take a half, and it would help me sleep. Then I actually started dating a boy who used them recreationally. It led me to use them more and more, which led to a path of just…it led to addiction. I started to become dependent on them. This was a battle that I faced silently for the most part for nine years. I would stop. I would go back. I would stop. I would go back.
When my mother passed away when I was twenty-six, I fell into a very big depression. Having a child inside me kept me going. I did get straight for a while, and I was really trying to be the person that I thought I should be, but I was damaged and really hurt. I was living with my best friend in her guest bedroom, with her husband and four sons and my daughter and I. Not one door was opening. I remember, I called one of my mother’s very best friends. I remember the words that she said to me at the end of our phone conversation. She said, “Give it to God.” I said, “Okay.” I have no idea what that means. Well, that night I had no peace. I’m tossing and turning. I hadn’t had a good nights sleep in I couldn’t tell you how long. I said, “God, I don’t know what I’m praying, but I give it to you.” I just kept saying that. “I give it to you. I give it to you.” After some time, He sent me a vision of Jesus in Tennessee. Jesus’s face, and then right after it, was the Tennessee mountains. Again, it wasn’t a very wild, in your face vision. It was just what I needed. It was just enough to know something happened. More than the vision, what happened during that, was the peace that the Lord sent. So I woke up the next day. I had no doubt in my mind that something had happened.
I had a cousin that lives in Crossville, TN. I’m feeling pretty gung ho at this point. I’m going to do it. This is my fresh start. We are going to do this. So I’m there for a couple of weeks, and a girl comes in, and she’s out of jail, and she’s selling prescription pills. This is something that I have battled. I knew what she was doing. I had stayed away from her, and then after a while my head thought, “Just get a couple because it will help you sleep.” I could easily have gotten back into a path where instead of anything turning around, it was going to go down. I had taken pills from my cousin’s cupboard. I confessed, so my cousin called the connections she had in town and got me into Teen Challenge. Really, there the Lord just got complete and totally a hold of me, showing me all of the reasons why I was using something other than Him to heal the pain that I didn’t understand. I was there allowed to, for the first time, grieve the death of my mother. I have an abundance of hope and peace and joy. It is better than any drug, any thing, any person, any relationship that you can ever have. It truly is a peace that surpasses all understanding. When you get it, you know, there’s not a doubt in your mind why you’re here and who you serve.