My parents were addicts—my dad to alcohol, my mom to heroin.When I was eight, I found my father’s dead body. Mom died when I was just 12. I ended up living with my grandparents, and it wasn’t long before I started smoking and drinking—partly to numb my pain.
At 21, I met a woman, and she got pregnant. Our son was born in July 2002 but died just a few weeks later from medical complications. I was devastated. I started drinking almost constantly. We had another child—a daughter, now 16—but I was a mess for most of the next 20 years—drinking and drugging, in and out of prison and rehab, relapsing . . . just a vicious cycle.
One day last summer, my cell phone died—and I think it saved my life. I was supposed to take an early bus to a job elsewhere, but since my alarm didn’t go off, I missed it. I felt like that was a sign from God to stay here in Fargo. I was done living the life of an addict.
I came to New Life Center for lunch, and they told me about the Genesis program for recovery. I had no idea how that would change my life. I’ve been here ever since, working on my mental health, dealing with things I’d never dealt with before, and overcoming my addictions. Everyone here is so good to me.
Now, when times get tough, I don’t lean on myself anymore, but on God. That’s making all the difference. Without New Life Center, I could be dead by now. I had no idea that I’d become a new man instead.