I was born and raised in Visalia, California. I grew up in a good Christian home, strict, but good; we were pretty sheltered and I didn’t really get in trouble. We went to church on Sundays, went to school, and came back home. When I was 15 years old we moved to Anchorage, Alaska to be closer to family. I dropped out of high school two months before graduating.
When I was 18 years old we moved back to Visalia. I met some friends and started partying. I became an alcoholic at that point. I drank a lot every day for about a year up until I experienced a significant traumatic event. At that point I quit drinking and started using drugs with my friends. It became an everyday routine. I would try to quit and would have no success. I hadn’t realized my drug use had become an addiction. I used on and off for about 14 years. In 2016, I became homeless and started using severely.
I stayed at the House of Hope about three or four times before I landed in jail. When I came out I was accepted into the Life Change Academy. Things were different this time, being in jail made me realize that I wanted change in my life; I needed Jesus Christ.
Since being in the Life Change Academy, and being sober, my mind’s opened up a lot and so has my personality. I’ve seen and experienced the power of prayer. I started reading the Bible every day and God showed up. It was like He was teaching me how to read, and everything I read was Him. It changed me. I can truly say that I’m alive today because God loves me and He never gave up on me. He’s a real presence in my life.
Since graduating the program, I believe that my calling, in part, is to help and serve people like me by offering them hope through Jesus Christ.