My Story by K.W.
Leaving home at the ripe age of 16, thinking I knew
everything, is not the choice I would have made today. But the life experiences
I have had in the last 24 years have made me the woman I am today.
Growing up in a small community, in a loving family
environment with them protecting me from the “badness” in the world and trying
to fulfill my needs and wants might have been others’ dreams, but it became my
Not wanting to follow the house rules and going out of my
way to sabotage any opportunities coming my way both personal and educational,
my parents felt the need or shall I say the obligation to give me a choice to
either “straighten” up or leave their house. To say the least, I chose to
leave. My mother decided the most responsible thing to do was to bring me to a
home for teenage girls that were coming either from the streets or foster
homes, hoping this would scare me and I would return home. With a couple of
bags of my belongings and my mother’s words ringing in my ear, “this hurts me
more than it is hurting you”, I proceeded to start my life’s journey as an
The first week at the home, I had my ups and downs. Most of
my belongings were stolen because I was too trusting and giving to the others
but the house rules made up for it. I had a curfew to be in before 11:00. Might
I add that I now was residing in the heart of downtown. This seemed too good to
be true. After about two weeks, one of the counselors took me and got me on
student welfare. Money, freedom and no guidance - what a mixture for someone as
green as I.
For the next twenty years, I was on welfare as a single
person. I managed to get myself into problems with the law and suffered from a
drug addiction. Each time I was confronted with a situation, I was able to talk
my way out of it until the last time 3 years ago. I was actually faced with
potential jail time and denied bail which caused me to detox in prison.
Coming out on bail with a clean head and a longing to do
something with my life, I got into a program and found employment. For the last
three years I have been clean and sober and employed for the first time in 20
years. I am taking night college courses. By letting my higher power take the
lead with little trials and tribulations, my life is finally manageable and
best of all, I love myself. “One day at a time” was the best advice I received
through meetings that has gotten me here today. K.W.