Learning to Love Again

Learning to Love Again

“I’ve seen miracles and I am a miracle… a surviving miracle.”

Barbara remembers the first time she reached for a bottle of alcohol. “I got married at 16 and my husband was abusive,” she says. “I used to drink so I wouldn’t feel the pain of him hitting or choking me.”

Barbara stopped drinking after her son and daughter were born, and she got divorced. “I made my decision to get out when both my babies were underneath the bed holding each other, watching me being abused. I would never let my children be treated the way I was.”

She stayed sober for many years. But when her son died from an overdose, she spiraled downward due to the grief and guilt she felt since she had not been able to save him. “When my son passed, there truly was not enough alcohol to put me in the grave with him.”

Then, one night, Barbara cried out to God, saying, “Lord, help me.” God answered her prayers through a cab driver who picked her up and dropped her off at Wheeler Mission – a place she didn’t even know existed.

Barbara found the strength to quit drinking and started to pick up the pieces through the classes and counseling she received through Higher Ground, our long-term addiction recovery program. “For the first time in my life, sitting in chapel one night, I actually felt God hold me. I heard him say, ‘You are going to be alright.’”

“I didn’t understand why God would let me go through so much.”

Today, Barbara serves as a ministry intern in our 9-month program, Equip, using her story to lead others to God. “I am so excited, and I know that God’s going to use my testimony as well as my son’s to either stop a mother from losing her child or a child losing their mother due to addiction.”

This Easter, Barbara and her daughter have reconnected and will celebrate the beautiful new beginning in their lives – another miracle made possible by your generous support. “I’m healthy and I have faith. I can love and trust again. I don’t think I can ever thank Wheeler Mission enough for that.”

To read this issue of Inside Story, click to download.