“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” That well-known statement has served true throughout many aspects of my life, but a fair share of my struggles were almost too much to bear. When my great grandmother died, I felt as if I was to blame. I smoked two packs that day, and felt miserable for weeks. However, once I had come to terms with it and accepted the fact that it has happened and it wasn’t my fault, I learned a very important lesson: Life isn’t always easy. And when it feels like it is too much to stand, find someone to talk to.
That lesson has helped me get through life here at Cookson Hills, because here I have friends and a counselor I can consult without fear of judgment. When I first came here, I felt very unappreciated and worthless. I felt as if I had no reason to be alive, and it was mainly because I felt abandoned. It wasn’t until later that it hit me; if I hadn’t come to Cookson Hills, I would probably still be facing all kinds of addictions, in jail, or dead. I was so engrossed in sin that I had lost touch with myself, and I had completely forgotten who God wanted me to be. I am very thankful that God sent me to Cookson Hills, because He showed me other people have had it tough too, and that I am lucky to have such a loving, supportive family that cares about me more than I will ever know.