Im a pretty private person. But, being private doesnt help anyone. Being transparent does. And the goal here is healing! Not just for you but for me too! So here it is. Why I am the way I am. Why I’m so passionate about seeing lives restored. This is my story.
I was born to two heroin addicted parents. From what I remember I had a good childhood! I was very loved and I was spoiled rotten with love! My dad used to carry me on his shoulders and sneak me candy and my mom was (and still is) truly OBSESSED with me! : ) There was a lot of arguing though… but I remember thinking that was normal. I remember knowing that something was up with them and their friends… I was the sweetest kid EVER but I was mean to their friends… I knew that they werent the best people to be around. But I didnt know why… I couldnt pinpoint it. In my little Jamie mind I knew that when they came over my parents were normal and when they left my parents were what I thought was tired or sleepy or sad. I remember seeing my dad pace the floor in slow motion and my mom drift off to her own little world. They were high. I knew that something wasnt right but I NEVER thought it would be drugs. One day I was outside playing having fun in my perfect no problem/ no responsibility 4th grade world and my mom called me inside. I was about to grow up way more than I knew. She took me in the back room of my sisters two bedroom apartment where we had just moved after being evicted from our own apartment. She told me that she and my father were addicted to drugs and that they were going to rehab for a while. I was going to live with my oldest sister. My whole world was crushed. I had been learning how to “Just say No” and my parents were addicts! I was very confused and upset that they were leaving me. I didnt understand why they couldnt just not do it anymore. I didnt understand that addiction is an illness. A disease. The cycle of rehab continued… They would go in dirty, come out clean, and relapse. Our lights would be off, my flute was having an affair with the pawn shop, and the fights and screaming matches continued. When I was in 10th grade my mom had a dirty UA and she was going to rehab for a third time. I was going to live with my oldest sister. And my dad was staying at the house that was my Grandmother’s. That is until the family decided that he wasnt going to turn my Grandmother’s house into a trap house. He was now out on the street. I cant even begin to explain the worry in my 14 year old mind. Where would he sleep? What would he eat? Was he safe? Would he die out there? I remember PRAYING that he would go to jail or calling his parole officer to tell her that he wasnt clean. Well, my prayers were finally answered and he went to jail. I still Thank God for that until this day because I know he was headed to his grave. I am positive of that. They came home clean a year or so later and after about a week… they were back pacing floors in their own world. It wasnt fair! Why did I have to grow up so fast? Why were they picking drugs over me?! My mom wasnt on probation anymore… she wouldnt have to pass anymore UA’s. And my dad celebrated his last day on parole. Was this ever going to end?! Well… yeah. It would. My Mom hasnt done any drugs in about 5 years!! (IM SO PROUD OF YOU GIRL!! NOBODY BUT GOD!) And although at times my Dad struggles with it, he is light years from where he was then. (C’MON SON! WERE PUSHING FOR YOU) They arent together anymore… but they are better a part. Addiction has afftected my life more than I will ever be able to put into words but, I wouldnt change a thing. God knew that all of it would make me the mature, responsible, caring, optimistic, tough loving, encouraging, SCARED OF DRUGS, etc. person that I am today and I really thank him for it all! I love the person that I am and I know that I wouldnt be all of me if it werent for the affect addiction had on me. I will have many, many, many posts about Restoration. About the disease addiction is, how it affects families AND how it affects the addict. About how we need to support our family and how addicts need to understand the hurt families are feeling. There is a conversation that needs to happen and a healing that needs to take place. At the age of 9 I NEVER thought my Mom would tell me she was addicted to drugs and at 20 I NEVER thought she would tell me she was clean. Restoration in possible!! Its time for addiction to have a seat in our families and communities. Im ready to help end addiction and whatever comes with it! Are you?