I was born and raised in Orange County and grew up in a Christian household. I had been around the church as long as I can remember. At a young age I didn’t understand religion, especially with my parents arguing and fighting all of the time. Being the youngest of three children, I became exposed to the differences in family dynamics between my family and my siblings as we got older. There happened to be a lot of blaming, secrets, and hypocrisy as I later discovered going into high school. I was not a very good student in comparison to my siblings. School was frustrating and difficult for me. My parents didn’t seem to understand, and at the same time, neither did I. I started struggling with school in third grade. I stated rebelling at a young age and began to experiment with drugs and alcohol. By sixteen, I was using “heavy” drugs. I was an athletic kid, but began hanging out with the wrong crowd after making me feel accepted. I have used drugs and alcohol for about ten years. I would steal to get my fix, occasionally overdose to find myself revived, and hurt my family repeatedly all in the process to keep up with my addiction. The vicious cycle of being constantly in and out of treatment, for me, was worse than jail! However, after all, it was treatment that helped conquer my obsession of wanting and needing to use drugs. I found that I benefited most with the help of Salina and South Orange County Detox and Treatment. The intimate setting helps me deal with core issues. They helped me pursue some of my biggest dreams and find lost passion. I have a relationship with my family again, and most of all, gained hope in the process. My progress only continues, and for this I am grateful.