My life from the beginning was rough. We lived on the streets and in and out of group homes and foster homes for the first 13 years of my life. My mother had finally got all 4 of us back and moved us to another state. I then started " acting out" and doing drugs and drinking. I was in rehab 3 times by the age of 14. All I did was go to school come home and get high on whatever I had in front of me.


I hated my life. I had no one. I tried killing myself three times by pills and slicing my wrists... obviously I was not successful. I was sitting on my front porch one day and some guys walked by, of course I'm going to talk to them being a teenage girl. So we all talked for hours and exchanged numbers. We became instant friends.


One guy in particular stuck out to me. He was very quiet and shy and very very respectful. I had to basically stand in front of his face for him to say anything. I started asking him to hang out just us two so I could get to know him better...just something about him I liked. We hung out more and more by ourselves and became really close.. inseparable. I had fallen in love. He was my best friend my soulmate my everything. He had me on cloud nine all the time. He was the love of my life. I knew then he was my one and only and no other guy would make me feel the way he did. I felt complete to where I didn't need all the drugs and alcohol anymore. day I was at work and something just felt off. About a hour later my friend came and told me the worst news of my life, my love had past away. He had drown in a river. I lost it. I was instantly lost and confused and in denial. I secluded myself from the whole world and got back on drugs and alcohol and didn't care about nothing or no one. I would go to work then back home and get high and wished everyday I were dead.


Well one day at work this "bad boy" started talking to me...he was very shy and sweet. We ended up hanging out all the time, doing drugs and getting drunk. We moved in together and that's where it all went downhill.


      It seemed normal for my life to constantly party. Always had people over and got so messed up to where I didn't remember anything. I hated life more and more everyday. Without my love I was nothing so I treated myself like nothing. I was on the bridge of death from all the drugs in my system. God had seen me and didn't like what he saw so he decided to give me the best thing in life...a little life.
I found out I was pregnant and instantly stopped all I was doing. I did right. But doing right was "horrible" for my boyfriend. I was three months pregnant with our child and he hit me for the first time. He was mad because I didn't want to go somewhere because I wasn't feeling good. He pinned me up on the wall and punched me a few times and choked me in front of some of his friends. I finally told him I would go so he would let go.
That was the first but not the last. From the on out, he was in control. I was scared to tell anyone or do anything about it. He would go to bars blow all his money on other girls and go home with them then come home and beat me "for being a nasty whore." He would scream and yell and hit me and wake our daughter up. She hated hearing what daddy was doing to mommy so she would run to my lap and cry and hold me.
My own baby knew she was saving me from evil because when she would sit on my lap he would stop and leave. I hated myself even more for living that way but I was scared to do anything because he always told me that I wouldn't find better and I was ugly and stupid and no one would want me, that I should feel lucky to have him, and if I left yet was going to kill me. He always told me he fantasized about killing me in many different ways. 
I ended up getting pregnant by him again. During my pregnancy, he left me for another girl because I couldn't work or have sex due to complications. After having our son, he decided he wanted to come back. Of course, why not. He was the father of both my children. So he came back and I was so depressed and hated life except for my two little ones. I had gotten back into drugs and alcohol again and I became numb to all of it. I went through a year of not caring about anything and partied til I passed out. I was over life by then. Having my nose broke and getting hit on a daily. I wanted it to end. But in one of my Drunken drugged up moments. I visioned myself dead and my kids life's not good at all.
That was basically my wake up call right there. So I saved up money and moved my little family to another state. I got a good job and made it my goal to only focus on them. I separated with my spouse and keep minimal contact with him only for our children. I found a great guy that we all fell in love with. He spoils my children and I and takes great care of us. We have a baby boy together now. I'm clean and sober and couldn't ask for anything better right now.
I have a great job, a house, three vehicles and the best family ever. I look back at my past and thank God every and all day for opening my eyes and helping me overcome my addictions and become the mother I needed to be...the woman I was craving to come out of me. I am now myself and nobody judges me. I love my life now. I was a disaster...and now I feel beautiful. 
Claudine Zoeller

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December 07, 2018