Tuesday, August 1, 2017

A Letter from an Addict's Child

Often times, when we think of addiction-- we think of teens or young adults. We also think of parents, who have lost their children due to addiction. We think about the amount of children in foster care, who have been displaced due to their parent's addictions. We rarely look at an adult, who has been through the trauma of being raised by an addict. These people walk among us in our daily lives, often times, not discussing the pain they felt throughout the years. 

We also sympathize with people who bury their children and grandparent's who bury their grandchildren...but what about the children and adults who buried their parents? They are the forgotten victims of addiction.  

They survived. They made it through...right? Wrong. They suffer every day with the memories and pains of losing their parent or never knowing if they could have done something differently to make that parent take a different path. They often times had to grow up way too fast and put their feelings on a shelf. They, as with every child, loved their parent with every ounce of their soul...and they too, have to come to the harsh reality that their loved one was an addict. Only their reality wasn't about someone that they raised, nurtured and brought into this world. They have to accept this reality about the people who were supposed to raise and nurture them. They have to accept this reality about the person who brought THEM into this world. It is their own personal, emotional, roller coaster of hell that addiction brings to families.

This is a letter from a young lady who lost her mother. This is a letter TO her mother. These are the words she wanted to say, but couldn't bare to say in person. These are the words she feels, thinks, and sometimes cries to herself. She wrote this to help those out there who feel the same pain, loss and disappointment that she has faced, so they know they are not alone. 

Dear Mom: 

I love you. You were my first best friend. We did everything together. For as long as I can remember, it was always me and you. 

Dad was always working hard so we could have fun and we did, we had fun. From trips to Disneyland, the beach, traveling to big cities, shopping, taking pictures, singing and dancing in the car, there was never a boring moment. And I have TONS of pictures to remember those times. 

Your love for me was out of this world. I have never felt the love you showed me and will probably never feel it again, but I'm thankful I had that love for as long as I did. You didn't show that love to just me, but for my siblings as 
well. That's one thing that no one can deny, you loved your children. 

I can say that I had the best childhood....until I was about the age 11-12. Things seemed off. You and dad were divorced. You had boyfriends that weren't good for you or for me to be around. Very abusive in every aspect possible. I witnessed a lot of the abuse. I learned more about drugs being so young than I probably should have, but I didn't believe it was you, I believed it was just the people you were hanging around. You were perfect in my eyes and could ever do such a thing. 

As I got older and into high school, I was able to put two and two together and realize what was going on. I wasn't stupid, but I was in denial. How could my mom, such a fun, loving, beautiful woman fall to such a disease? There's no way. It wasn't until some major life changing events happened that I realized, you were an addict. 

It's hard for a child to accept. It's embarrassing. I felt like I was the only child in the world who had a parent that was an addict. I had friends wonder why I could only see you under certain circumstances and I had to make up some stupid excuse because they lived a sheltered life and would have no idea what I was talking about and I didn't want anyone to think anything bad about you. I didn't want anyone to judge you, or me, or any of our family. 

You are a not a bad person in my eyes and never will be, you made bad decisions. When you took the initiative to get clean and completed your program, I was so proud and so happy thinking that was the end of a horrible chapter of your life and mine. However, you relapsed a year or so later, and just like when I was a teen, I was in denial. I knew you had relapsed, but I just didn't want to believe that this nightmare was coming back again. So I distanced myself from you. I will always regret this decision. 

I distanced myself because I did not want to be around the abuse and the drugs. I had dealt with it for far too long that I could not handle it anymore. I still talked to you quite a bit, but just short conversations. I was off work one day and decided to stop by your house. It was so nice to see you. You were in a great mood. We talked, laughed, like best friends. I left, gave you a hug and said "see you soon." Little did I know, that "soon" would be a week later, in a casket. 

Your death is by far the worst, most traumatic event, that I have ever dealt with to this day. My mom, the woman who I thought was so pretty, so perfect, so smart, funny, my first best friend, was gone, forever. Although I know you're in a better place now, you are so missed. I wish I would have said something to you when I knew you had relapsed, that maybe that would have made a difference and you would still be here today. However, everything happens for a reason, and it was your time to go. This journey has taught me what to look for and how to keep my children from falling victim to drugs and addiction. 

I just want you to know that I forgive you and I love you. I will never think badly about you. I can't wait to see you again. 

Your daughter. 

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Why Don't We Lock Up the Deadliest Weapons In Our Homes?

This isn't about gun control. This is about self-control and the lack of it, in our teens. Constantly we talk about firearm safety and the need of a safe, locks and putting weapons out of reach; yet we allow our kids free access to the thing killing more people in the United States than firearms---DRUGS.

I've been preaching for a couple of years now about the need for parents to lock up their medications; yet it still continues to be something parents neglect. I want you to think about your sleeping pills, your anxiety pills, your old pain pills from a previous surgery. Where are they? Do you even know? Do you keep them safely locked away or are they a loaded weapon in your home? How about your teen's wisdom teeth surgery? Where are their pills? Did you get them filled? If you didn't---did you shred the prescription that their oral surgeon likely gave them for narcotics? Do you realize that your teen could fill that prescription for those hydrocodone and sell them at school or to a friend for more than $20 a pill? Maybe your kid really wouldn't do that---but do you know that 1 out of every 6 teens would buy them or take them? Did you know that?

Do you think "Oh, my son would never take pills"?  Are you willing to take that chance? How do you know that one of their friends won't take your pills?  These are the questions you need to ask yourself.  Would you trust your child with a loaded firearm without your supervision, especially if they were not trained to handle it? No, you wouldn't. So why trust them with a substance that killed 52,404 people in the year 2015 alone. Think about that for a second...52,404 people took that loaded weapon and died.

Just like a firearm, you cannot "un-shoot" the bullet. You can't un-ring the bell. You can't undo the first taste of a narcotic, if your son or daughter enjoys that first buzz. Narcotics are dangerous and although they usually won't kill someone on the first "shot"--they can kill someone in a much longer, drawn out and painful death.

I didn't know these weapons were a danger in my home. I had no idea that someone else's son or daughter would take them. I had no idea that my child would take them. I had no idea these medications were abused or were a problem among young people. I had no idea that in 2015, they would kill 52,404 people. I know it now...and so do you. We all have the responsibility to keep our kid's safe. Don't risk it.

The simple task of locking up your medication could save a life. It could save YOUR kid's life.

Lock them up.


Sunday, July 2, 2017

Blogging, Bumps and GPS

I haven't blogged much, because I really haven't had much to say. Shocking, isn't it? I've tried to step back a bit on my personal stories because I have felt that I put my family under a microscope for awhile and I have regretted it in some ways. Dealing with addiction is hard on a family. Dealing with recovery while everyone is watching you, can be even harder. Ok, that is an embellishment, it's not even close...but it can be challenging. Addi has been great about talking about her struggles, being honest and, because of me---she has been an open book; BUT, there have been times over the last 9 months that she has been home, where she wished we hadn't been so open. The pro's have far outweighed the con's and the support from most everyone has been immeasurable...but she is a human.  Her moving home and dealing with recovery hasn't been effortless. It has taken a lot of work and patience from all of us; and we have had some bumps in the road. The difference is,  she has handled those bumps rather than turning around and going backwards. She puts the car in neutral sometimes, but knows she can't go in reverse or she will hit a bigger bump and blow out her engine.

Trying to stay sober in a world of temptation can be hard. Honestly, I have learned so much more about her in the last 15 months than she has probably learned from me in her lifetime. She has taught me about resilience, determination, patience, trust, and GRACE. It's easy to sit behind this keyboard and tell everyone what they SHOULD do, to help their loved one. It's easy for me to show grace to someone in an instant message on Facebook. It's easy for me to be determined not give up on her, when she is sitting in a secluded facility far away from the real world in which we live. It's not easy to do all of those things in REAL life. I'm honestly not very good at it. I drive her crazy. If I could implant a GPS into her skin, I would. She puts up with me too, because she understands that, as my husband says, "Trust is earned in inches and lost in miles"--and I never fail to remind her of all the times she lost my trust in the past. It's wrong of me, but I admit, I do it.

She has faced people from her past, has been called names from people in messages, she has dealt with people watching her every move and some hoping she will fail because they failed. She has dealt with me nosing into her college reports, nosing into her social media and nosing into her friendships of people I do show grace, and others that I fail miserably to truly forgive. She says her life is no more valuable than anyone else's. I agree with that...however, I didn't give birth to everyone else. I gave birth to her. I LOVE her. I want to wrap her in a bubble and protect her...but I can't...and she is teaching me that. She has had moments where she has been absolutely sick of me and snapped at me---and almost inevitably, she will either come back into the room or send me a text message..."I'm sorry. Sometimes the old Addi comes out and I react badly."  She has had to deal with me picking her every move apart and analyzing her every breath, pupil and appearance and has had to go take random drug screens just "because I want her to."  She has had to deal with me for 9 straight months and hasn't packed up and left and she has not killed me. That is some serious progress for us.

Now, about the really awesome things. She has established a relationship with her family again-- with us, her dad and stepmom, her extended family, and she is especially close to her grandparents again; she went on FAMILY VACATION with us for the first time in 10 years; she goes to church every Sunday; she has gotten involved in our church; she has done GREAT in college and is enrolled for Summer and Fall; she has become HILARIOUS again; she is learning to budget (not well, but learning); she has made new friends, who are great influences; she has forgiven; she has learned to lean on our pastor and his wife when she struggles with life; she has learned that she can't fix anyone but herself; she has learned that she hates Algebra, but loves writing; she has learned she hates Geography, but loves Communications; she has learned she isn't ready sometimes to be "normal" as the world says "normal" is; and she has learned she is stronger, wiser, smarter and more beautiful than she realized.

So, I guess the point of this blog, is that life will never be just unicorns and rainbows. Part of recovery, is learning how to deal with those times when your alarm doesn't go off, your car is out of gas, it is raining outside and you have a test about a subject you don't understand. Recovery is a process, not a single act. Recovery is within a whole family, not a single person. Recovery for a mom is trying to look 2 times at the GPS instead of 10 (per hour). Recovery is learning how to use the "unfriend" and "block" buttons on Facebook; and learning to stand on your feet when you feel like jumping into a pit. She is recovering...and so am I.

Get through the bumps and you will keep moving forward.

Monday, May 8, 2017

The Normal Teenage Girl

I actually played softball with your daughter when we were kids. You probably didn’t know I was a drug addict. I have been clean over 7 years now. I would like to share my story in hope of helping someone else.

This is my story of addiction.

I was your teenage girl. Loved life. Loved sports. Loved boys.

It all started with alcohol. I'd drink anything I could get my hands on. I tried cocaine for the first time when I was barely 16. I met a guy and fell in with him and his friends, the “wrong crowd”, so to speak. He talked me into dealing and using pot, coke, pills, etc. He used meth, but I was too scared to try it. I left him after 10 months and moved in with my new man who I knew from high school, not too much later. I dropped out of school my sophomore year because I was too busy getting high. There were times I would get so “pilled out” that I would have memory lapses while driving or at someone's house. Later, I would be told about things I'd done and I had zero memory of them.

I overdosed and somehow survived many times.

After a short time I found myself being abused physically and mentally by that man I thought I loved. We did nothing but get messed up and fight and argue. I finally left him after 2 ½ years and moved back in with my dad. I then met a guy that worked at the restaurant I did and he seemed really great at first. Said all the right things, he was very nice. He introduced me to his friends who dealt and used drugs of all kinds and some who worked at a local strip joint. I unfortunately was wooed in to their life and started doing more drugs and started working at the strip club as a dancer to support our many habits. This is by far the most embarrassing thing I ever did. While there, I experimented with more drugs. Now I had done many drugs including coke, crack, meth, ecstasy, oxycontin, acid, shrooms, morphine, and even some experimental drugs that I couldn't tell you the name. I was in very deep.

I stole pain pills from my family's own medicine cabinet and stole money as well to fuel my habit. That is why it is so important that parents lock up their medications. I can promise you that kids will take them. 

In my early years, I would self harm (cutting my wrists) before I ever started using any drugs. I have scars all over my arms that remind me every day of that battle. When I see other people with scars like mine, I just want to give them a hug and tell them it'll all be ok and over one day.

I finally wised up and left that guy and moved back in with my dad. I was finally starting to get clean. Well “clean-er.” I had quit many things…but not everything yet. Then I met a man. A truly great man. We started dating and hit it off instantly. I believe strongly that if it weren’t for him I would be dead or in jail. I quit that job got clean. I was done with drugs. I wanted to break free…and I did.
Today I have been clean for 7 1/2  years and I'm engaged to the man of my dreams and we have a beautiful daughter together.
Occasionally I still have bad days where I'll have a craving, but I just remind myself what I've been through and how it would ruin my now happy life, so I tell myself it's not worth it. My daughter needs her mom, and that's the best thing to keep me clean.

I also used to avoid my family as much as possible because of the shame I felt being a druggie and then also a stripper. I knew if I went around them at high use times they would know I was high. Now I wish I could get those times back I missed out on with my family members who are gone. I have many regrets that I will never be able to go back and change. But I can only try to be a better person now and spend as much time with my family as possible. In order to 100% get away from that life, I had to never see or speak to those people again, even my best friend at the time. It's the only way.

Every story of addiction is different. Everyone starts in a different way for a different reason. I was in the wrong places at the wrong times with all the wrong people. I found myself being pressured by people, usually my exes, and feeling like I can't say no. Today I speak to zero of the people that joined me down that path. I never want to go back there again. I am finally clean and happy.

I at least feel better after saying all of this. I hope my story can help others. I hope my story can help others struggling with addiction and can help parents know what the signs they may be seeing in their own kids.

People caught in addiction need help and help is something that is hard to come by. Most people judge and condemn people like me because they've never been there and don't understand what it does to you and your loved ones. They look at us like a lost cause. Like it's too late for us. We are not a lost cause. We can be productive members of society if given the chance and given love and help. We want that, even while being destructive, we wish we weren't that way. I can't tell you how many times I cried while doing these horrible things. I would think of my family and what a disappointment I must've been. How I was a waste of a human being. I know now I was just a very troubled girl in a tornado of destruction that I set loose.

I hope that addict stereotype can be crushed one day and we aren't looked at as a waste of life and energy, but a real person with real problems who needs a loving hand to help them get their life back and actually live again.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

365 Days

Today is the day! Addi is one year clean. I'm so proud of her and the changes she has made in her life and continues to make each day.

A year ago at this very time, she was getting ready to be arrested. She had agreed to go to treatment and backed out at the last minute, and our family friend Jane headed to a hotel to plead with her to go and she refused. Another friend, worried about her fate, called the police to do a well check on her. The police went to the hotel and found my sick daughter...and 365 days later---here we are! She hasn't touched a substance in 365 days. No "medicated assisted treatment"; no "drugs to get her off of drugs"...just cold turkey, withdrawal and then finally...the feeling of freedom.

In a year, we have learned so much about ourselves. She has learned that she doesn't "need" anyone or anything but God to fulfill her soul. I've learned to let go. I'm not going to lie---I am still terrified sometimes. This anniversary had me on pins and needles. Really, day 365 is no different than 366, but better than 364. It's just a number. The real accomplishment is that, although she is proud of her progress...she too, realizes it is just a number. I had asked her if she wanted to celebrate somehow and her response was "Why should we celebrate behavior that I should have done all along?"  She made a valid point. She should have never gotten in this mess to begin with---but she did and she has learned lessons that will help others. As a mom, I have learned to fight for not only her, but for others who are learning the same hard lessons. We have traveled this road for a reason.

I've not been blogging much because I wanted to give her some space, privacy and peace to keep moving towards a normal life. Her life has been 365 days of miracles and personal achievements. If you would have told me a year ago, that today, I would be blogging, while my daughter is in class in college---or that she herself drove to college, in a cute vehicle her grandparents bought her, I would tell you that you are insane. If you would have told me that her Aunt TT and Uncle Kevin would be footing the bill for her college right now, I wouldn't be amazed at their generosity because they are generous people, but WOULD be amazed at the faith they have put into her. Every day she is dressed and out the door at 6:50 AM with her daughter all dolled up, with a bow in her hair and ready for her day. That is a glimpse of the old Addi that always attended school on time, up and at 'em and organized for school-- before drugs interrupted her life. She is doing the "little things" that are "big things" to me and my husband.

She has also become active in our church. Sounds so weird to say "OUR" Church. We have never really had a church we felt comfortable or attended regularly. We have found OUR church in this past 365 days, in Carterville Christian Church. She is now running the video camera that she volunteered to do; she recently gave her testimony to share; she was baptized in November; and each Sunday, Chris and I watch from the middle section (where we like to be) and we will see her on row 1, with her hands up in praise and almost every Sunday, we look at each other with tears in our eyes. Her faith is strong. Her comfort level with the Pastor Robin Sigars and his wife Jayme is incredible.  She feels loved. She feels at home there. Robin is same pastor who over a year ago, found her at a convenient store (she tells me, she was about to get high), just so he could pray with her--is now "her pastor."  Utterly amazing "coincidences."

There are way too many people to thank and acknowledge without leaving someone out. So many people have given her encouragement, support, a smile, a kind word or helped her along the way in big and small ways...even readers, who have never met us in person. Our family has been incredible and have rallied around her better than ever.  Her Nina helps her with Evie's daycare so she can attend school; her Advisor at school has been a great support and understanding ear; her old high school friends that are her "real friends" have welcomed her back into their lives; just so many instances of support, I cannot describe them all. So many people have stopped me and just said "How is Addi?"  It means so much to our family.

The one person I do want to thank, is Addi. She has allowed me to expose her life in public view because her heart is big and she doesn't want to see others suffer like she has suffered. She has allowed the embarrassment of some of her most horrible times, to be aired publicly, because she wants to help others see the light. She has held her head up in the midst of shame to show others that there is no shame in being broken and you can be fixed. She has handled little things thrown at her in the last year with a clear mind, even if it may take a month or so to realize her feelings. She has forgiven quicker and learned to love people even in spite of their shortcomings. She has also learned that she can be an example but that she personally cannot save anyone else. She has taught me that "grace" is something you do not pick and choose who should receive it, but that all people deserve it. She has become the sister again, that her little brother missed so dearly. She has become the daughter that my husband has never had and loves her so much. She has reconciled with her own daddy and his family, which has mended a huge chunk of her heart. She is a great student and has recognized when something may be over her head--and she remedies it. Yes, my Addi has become a "problem solver."  She has a sense of humor again and makes us laugh every single day. She has shown us that people can change, and that although scientifically, addiction is a "disease"--it is also a a conquerable one that must be fought day by day.

Addi--thank you. Thank you for being alive today. Thank you for not giving up 365 days ago, when it appeared I had given up on you. You have proven to me that a Mom never gives up in her heart. A mom never quits fighting for her child, no matter the age. Children can teach mom's as much as we teach them. You have taught me so much and you have made me a better person. I love you, sis. I made it all the way through this blog without bawling until now. :)  I am so proud of you. So so proud. Let's do this again next year. Until then, lets just focus on today...then tomorrow...

To those of you who are reading this and feel that your place in life is too lost, too dark and too hopeless---we are here to tell you--it is NOT. There is life in your soul. Feed it, find it, and ask for help. Addi is no more of a person than you are---she just hit rock bottom and stood up. You can too. If she can do it, you can too. Please remember that...YOU CAN TOO!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

"Gaining My Guardian Angel" Written by Sydney Brock Ross

My name is Sydney. I lost my brother 5 years ago March 22nd to an overdose of multiple pills and alcohol at only 21 years old. Every single year as the anniversary of his death creeps closer, the heavier he gets on my heart and mind. It's almost just like a volcano, erupting slowly with emotions at first, and then flooding me with memories of the exact day my guardian angel was given to me. Here is my story. 

Growing up, my brothers and I had a wonderful life. We had amazing parents who always went above and beyond to provide for us and give us the absolute best of everything. Every weekend was full of long drives, mostly to sports events, sometimes just taking us to the movies, or the skating rink, but they were ALWAYS there to give us the leisure of doing such things. We had it made. All of our friends wanted to come to the Brock house. Everyone was happy. And then our family was introduced to prescription drug abuse. 

My brother Ryan's senior year, maybe even after, (I'm not exactly sure), he started dabbling into taking pills. Eventually he was spiraled out of control on pills. Snorting them, smoking them, just taking them even. And then the lies started, the stealing, the fights every other night between my parents and big brother that I've looked up to my whole life. Me being as young as I was, (5th or 6th grade), my mind and heart were so confused by all of the chaos going on around me. As I watched my parents send my brother in and out of rehab centers trying to give him the help he needed, I also watched them develop tired eyes, a tired heart, and major confusion as well. They were starting to give up hope. 

Fast forward a few years. Ryan is now clean and doing well with the help of a detox drug, working good, and my parents finally had some hope. Until the small signs started coming back around. Pills missing here, pills missing there. Full bottles at a time would come up missing but this time the grasp had gotten ahold of Alex. I don't think that my brother ever hit the full blown addict stage. Alex was a partier, he was someone who would walk in a room and light up every single face in there with his big smile and goofy giggle. He loved to be around everyone, doing what everyone else was doing, and in that I believe that he got out of control without knowing he was out of control yet. He thought he was safe, that it would never be him laying on a couch passed out overdosing while his friends continue to party on and don't notice, (or do, but decide to let him lay there for almost 16 hours), he never thought it would be him losing his life. 

Eventually the partying did win the battle with my brother, and on March 22nd, 2012 my family got that unbelievably heart breaking phone call. "Alex is dead". Click. They then hung up on my dad. As he started to panic and call back, my brother Ryan calls and says "hey, something happened to Alex, I'm on my way home." My mom, whose sitting next to me with hair dye in her hair, starts to scream "ALEX IS DEAD! ALEX IS DEAD!" I will never forget the horror and sadness in hers and my dads voice as they scrambled around to call every police station and morgue in the city trying to find my brother. I remember telling my mom to stop saying that, that it wasn't true. She showered and they went and identified my brothers badly decomposed body. By the time my parents got back, my grandma and brother had gotten to the house and were sitting with me. My mom came in the front door, sat down on the couch, and told us that he had died. From then on for the next week, people were in and out of our house, bringing flowers, cards, food, love, hugs, support, and everything else you can imagine. The overwhelming support saved us beyond words and to this day I still remember every face that came in and out of our living room. Every single detail replays in my mind each year as the 22nd of march comes around, and every single year the pain is still there, sharp and shattering.

After losing my brother,  my life has changed drastically. Every day after his passing I have watched every single loved one around me crumble to pieces. I've been there to hold my mom, the strongest woman on earth, while she cried and screamed for the return of her baby boy. I've been woken up to the wailing of my dads sobs from the basement as he went through the items my brother had when he passed. Nothing on this earth will be more heart shattering than watching your parents deteriorate into someone who dreads their days because of the dark ache in their chest and stomach. It physically, mentally, emotionally and socially destroys you. It sucks the wind out of your chest some days to the point of panic attack on panic attack. And not to mention watching my oldest brother, who has been his best friend for 21 years now, (who has also struggled with pill addiction and has been clean for years), crumble as well with the heartache that DRUGS bring. Watching his friends, ex-girlfriend's, co-workers, and SO many more people ache for his loss.

Growing up and watching my brothers both battle with drugs, among other things, I never thought they would be the ones taken from this earth. I never thought MY family would be the ones getting the unbelievably crushing call from someone with the news of losing a loved one, and being in my parents position, losing their baby. It's something that rips your heart in so many directions; you're pissed, you're confused, you're sick to your stomach, you can't figure out why it happened to you, to your family. And let me tell you right now, those feelings never go away. Almost 5 years later and I still sit and wonder so many things my brother would be doing these days. If he would be married, have babies of his own, a house, what kind of job? What would he look like? How would he sound? Smell? Wherever he is, I hope he is safe.

 I've struggled since before my brother died with super weird depression and anxiety and I know how horrible the feeling of loss is. My heart goes out to every single family with a loved one fighting the battle of addiction because the grasp is so strong and so deadly. Life is so short; you truly never know what day will be your last. For those of you doing good, KEEP DOING WHAT YOU ARE DOING! Do it for yourself, your babies, your true loved ones. And no one else. Allow yourself to just breathe and live day by day. You can only go up from where you are!

The heartache of addiction and loss is something I will struggle with the rest of my life. Before you decide to pick up that needle, decide to pop those few pills and then drink on top of it and then drive, before you snort those pills or whatever you choose, think of your family, your babies if you have them. Think of your parents who have loved you since the day you were born. Or think of yourself and how much you are worth. Because I can promise you one thing right now, you ARE worth it! You are worth every single good and bad day. Love yourself enough to realize it.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Tomorrow Isn't Promised

In our church sermon a couple of weeks ago, Pastor Robin Sigars spoke about how tomorrow isn't promised and we should stop putting off our faith until "tomorrow." He talked about how our days are numbered and that we need to give our lives to God right NOW.  If you die today--are you ready? If not, get ready TODAY.  In the past few weeks, I've seen "tomorrow" not come for several people, who had life cut short. Some lives very short.

I want this blog to reach those of you who keep relying on "tomorrow." Perhaps tonight you take that hit of heroin or meth or whatever your drug of choice may be---and your heart stops. You are gone. Your tomorrow will not come. How would your family survive without you? How would they handle your loss? Do you have children? If so, what will they think someday that you chose that "hit" rather than attending their preschool program? How do your parents or siblings explain to one another as to why you aren't at your brother's wedding? How does someone explain to your Mom why you aren't here for Mother's Day?

Drugs are liars. They make you feel that you are invincible, indestructible, and that you will always have a "tomorrow."  My daughter said she often hoped that she would have no "tomorrow" so she could stop the chase; stop the agony; and let go of the pain. Now that she has been clean 11 months, she sees that "tomorrow" can be beautiful. She sees that her life is worth it and that her family needs and loves her.

When I started this Facebook page last year, I started getting messages from people just like me. Mom's, Dad's, Sister's, Brother's, Husband's, Wives..all wanting help for their loved ones or needing to just talk to someone who feels their pain. I've become quite attached to some of my readers that I don't even know personally---but feel I do, because they have told me their stories. Yesterday morning I woke up to an inbox message that literally broke my heart. It was one of my readers, who lost her daughter the night before. The same daughter she had written me about--the same daughter that had tried to get help and wanted to live. Now, she was gone. Her mom is devastated, but what struck me the most, is her desire to help YOU. Her desire to get through to someone else so that they will not feel her pain. She knows her daughter wanted to conquer her addiction and now, this mom, in the midst of her pain, wants to speak up to get someone else's attention. Tomorrow did not come for her daughter...but she wants "tomorrow" to come for you.

This is my plea. If you need help--get it NOW. Make today the day that you change your life. Make today the day that you shut the door on the negative influences leading you back into darkness. Reach out and get help.

If you don't get help today...your tomorrow may not come.