When your life comes crashing down all around you, it’s really hard to pick yourself up without some help.

Four years ago, my world came crashing down on me. The life I thought I had built for myself turned out to be a well- planned illusion, which I had fallen for. Following the worst moments of my life was a series of heartbreak after heartbreak, which resulted in me losing my 3 children, home, job, and even freedom. This is when I learned about and began taking classes through the New Beginnings Program. I continued with the program as soon as I was released from jail, as I knew I needed this. I needed the guidance, knowledge, and support and still do, as my battle isn’t over yet.

One of the things that makes this program so special is that it isn’t just for right when you get released, but for all the mess that follows after, too. It took a few months for me to go from being homeless, car-less, and jobless, to overcoming all three things. However, in the process of working so hard to get these things, I didn’t notice that my anxiety and depression had taken over. Because of this program and the trust I have built at Women’s Resource Center, I felt safe enough to open up about the new struggles I was just realizing.

Asking for help is so hard, it can be embarrassing and feel shameful even. But I feel safe here to share, unlike so many other places I have dealt with over the past four years. After the tragedy that happened to my family, all the trauma that has happened since, and all the terrifying challenges before me, finding a safe place has been a miracle I have needed for so very long.

Over the past few years, I have had numerous counselors at another organization. Although there has been helpful information and some progress made, I could always tell that I was a number, not a person. With each new counselor, I had to start over, tell my whole story, and go over what I had done with the previous counselor. It felt like clockwork. Each suggested the same things and what felt like in the same order, as though they read off a script.

My Career Coach at Women’s Resource Center, Tia, HEARD me and I was not a number to her. Instead of telling me to practice “positive self-talk”, like everyone else has, she came up with something different and that actually works for me. We text each other every day, which is something we are proud of ourselves for doing. It doesn’t matter how big or how small, because sometimes it’s the small things that pull you up and out of the hole you have started falling into. So many times, people fall down too many holes and eventually don’t come back up. I don’t want that to be me. But I know that having Tia and Women’s Resource Center on my side has kept that from happening. It gives me faith that I can do this, even if I need help sometimes.