God filled the huge void in my life
God filled the huge void in my life
The minute I tried alcohol, I thought I’d found the answer to my problems. I felt immense warmth and relief and all my burdens and pain became a distant memory. I was only 12, attending a party in a local park, the first of many parties like this over the next few years. Little did I know it was the start of a downward spiral into the depths of despair, otherwise known as addiction.
It wasn’t long before I was smoking pot (marijuana). I tried speed when I was 16 and had injected heroin by 19. My family had always been loving and supportive, although dealing with my father’s alcoholism was difficult. I now understand what my mum went through in keeping the family together and afloat.
I struggled and worried a lot when I was younger. I was overweight and bullied at school. Somewhat overwhelmed with issues I didn’t know how to deal with, I regularly turned to drugs and alcohol. Deep down, however, I knew the party couldn’t last. I was 19, and after returning from an overseas trip to China where I had been teaching English, I was confronted with a father who was very sick as a result of prolonged alcohol abuse, and a sister in the depths of heroin addiction. I no longer wanted this (drugs and alcohol) for my life, so I checked myself into rehab. I stayed in rehab for a year, addressed my issues as best I could and managed to stay clean and sober for two years. Shortly after I left rehab my father died. I was absolutely shattered. I once again turned to alcohol but it no longer had the same calming effect. When a friend suggested we try injecting ice it seemed like a good idea. Little did I know that this one decision would create so much havoc and heartache.
Over the next nine years I lost my selfrespect, integrity and dignity, along with my values and morals. I didn’t care about anything except drugs. At the peak of my addiction I was injecting heroin and ice up to seven times a day, and committing crimes to support my habit. I desperately wanted to stop, but this time I couldn’t. I wanted to die, as I believed this was the only way out. So I prayed for my pain and suffering to end. Shortly after this heartfelt prayer, I was arrested and jailed for my drug-related crimes.
Looking back it was the best thing that could’ve happened and, in fact, probably saved my life. While I was on parole, three of my friends died – all drug-related. It was a serious wake-up call. A dear friend of mine suggested I call The Salvation Army Dooralong Transformation Centre. I had nothing left to lose and everything to gain, yet I was doubtful it would work. With so many recovery attempts, why should this one be any different? All I needed was a seed of hope. I needed God to break through my desperation and despair, and fill me with grace – which he did.
I believe I was guided to Dooralong Transformation Centre. Everything and everyone I’ve needed has been provided. In abundance I might add! God works through people. Management and staff are dedicated, passionate individuals, who go above and beyond in order to help the addicts who still suffer. God’s angels I call them, because without their love and support I really don’t know where I'd be today. I’m so grateful that my relationships with family and friends are being restored, and I can honestly say I know who I am today.
Opening up my life to God has given me the peace and love I have craved my whole life. I have direction and goals that I’m working toward, and I’m no longer looking to fill that void within myself because God has done that for me. When I align my will with God’s will, then that’s how I get the assurance I’m on the right track. I know peace, happiness and freedom and for that I am forever grateful.