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Meet Amber

 

How did you get started with drugs and alcohol?

I was a mean kid; I was a bully, so I was always in trouble. I was the one who cussed the teachers out and stuff. I was always in ISS and after school detention. I was always looking for some relief and I found that in drinking and smoking weed, then doing whatever drug. Alcohol was always a problem because I always drank way too much. I never just casually drank, I drank until I blacked out, lost a shoe, threw up in someone’s car, so when I found methamphetamine I was able to stay awake and alert. When I was a teenager, I tried a little bit of everything. The disease part really didn’t take effect until I was 19. I used for 20 years and sold drugs for the past 15 years. The first real job I’ve had is working in the kitchen at Dallas 24 Hour Club.

 

Wasn’t it scary selling drugs?

Yeah. It was really scary when the FBI and DEA rolled in 10 deep. My husband is still in the federal penitentiary. It was a crazy lifestyle. In 2012, my husband found out that he just about blew his heart out due to methamphetamines. He was on his death bed for about a year before he got better. He was living with all the fear of spending his life in prison and going to die anyway, so the violence in our house got really bad. At the time, I didn’t know I had a drug problem. It was just my lifestyle. I didn’t know anything about recovery until CPS stepped in – my husband was already in the federal penitentiary. CPS came in and said there was a problem in our house, which there was because I was an addict. It took them pointing it out to me and sending me to rehab. I’ve been to 3 rehabs in the past 3 years and it gave me knowledge of this recovery. When I kept using it brought on this guilt and shame like I’ve never experience ever before, so that’s when I realized that I’m miserable high and miserable sober.

 

How did you end up at Dallas 24 Hour Club?

I tried to get clean through rehab and a recovery coach. I was desperate and broken all the way around. I knew how miserable I was. I couldn’t get clean sober and I couldn’t get sober high. I told my recovery coach this and she picked me up and brought me to Dallas 24 Hour Club. Dakota was the only one who would talk to me the first two weeks because I was so messed up when I came in. Being here has taught me a lot to work, pay my own bills and buy my own food. It’s all new to me. I’ve always been co-dependent.

When I think back, a lot of times I thought I was going to lose my life at my husband’s hand, but I was so tired. I was kind of accepting of it, I was tired of fighting. Now that I look back with a clear head, God was with me the whole time, through all of it. I’ve never had a drug charge, my family still loves me, I still have my kids in my life, I still have rights to them, so now that I see that God has always been with me, how can I turn my back on him? The steps have shown me how to have that communication with my higher power now and how to use him in my life and how grateful I am for that. I knew he was around before, but I didn’t know how to manage that relationship to be a benefit. But he’s always been there. That’s the only excuse I have for where I am today.

 

If it wasn’t for Dallas 24 Hour Club:

If it wasn’t for Dallas 24 Hour Club I would have never done step work. I would be miserable. I have a picture of before I came here and it’s horrible. I look like death. It’s hard for people to see that picture even, that’s how scary it looks. I looked like that for years.

 

What is one thing you want us to know?

I laugh a lot and everyone at The 24 keeps pointing it out to me. I didn’t start laughing until I made it to The 24. I think back and even when I was a little kid, I don’t remember laughing. But I laugh all the time up here and I’m enjoying it. For the first time, I enjoy life and I love life. That is the biggest gift ever.

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