As a young two-year-old, I was abused by my biological mom physically, and I was sexually abused by her boyfriend until I was four years old. Then, I was taken away and put in a foster home, which was a good home.
I stayed there until the age of 10 years old. I ended up going to a group home because of my disabilities and behavior problems. I had PTSD, OCD, bipolar, ADHD, mild intellectual disability and a few other disorders.
From there, I went to an institution called Napa State Hospital, where again I was abused physically. When I turned 16 years old, I went back to my foster family who I was with before. At 18 years old, I ended up going to another institution, called Porterville Developmental Center, because of my self-injurious behaviors. There I was abused both physically and sexually.
It took a lot of good people to fight and advocate for my rights in court so I could get out in the community and live in my own home with supported living staff. I did not want to be in an institution, getting abused and treated like an animal. I was a kind, loving and caring human who did not need to be there. So, Sadie and Joanne from Compass, my foster mom, Dyan, my foster sister, Trisha, Rodica from mental health from East Bay Area, my therapist Dr. Kumar, Ellen Gold-Black, my lawyer and Alicia Gershwin, my advocate from patients’ rights and advocacy, all fought for me to move out of the abusive developmental center and into supported living services. They fought for me to be treated like a respected human being, and this is where my life started to turn around. I was saved by living in the community and not in institutions, and I never returned to an institution again. I didn’t realize it at that point, but I know now that Jesus was looking out for me.
These people who were put in my life were good, strong believers in Christ. Sadie and Joanne were who I was going to be under in supportive living, which made me happy. I believed in God our Father, Jesus Christ. I was just sad and depressed and did not love myself. I also thought God did not love me and that was why all the bad things happened to me. I still loved him. I just thought I was bad, not good, and maybe that was why God did not like me. However, the people who came into my life were a gift that he gave me to save me and to help me see that he loves me and that I have so much to offer the world through him. I can help him out by reaching into people’s souls to help them see that they too can become Christ-like to serve the Lord and love him the way he loves us and honors us. I also see that I’m gifted, unique, special and that I should love myself.
The people who came into my life to help me succeed are people who came to teach me something different, new, unique, true and holy. They help me build myself to be a stronger, happier, self-reliable, independent, strong believer in God Jesus Christ and to live a happy, successful life. That’s what I learned to do–love myself and take care of me so I can help others the way I want to be helped. I learned that I can’t do any of this if I don’t love myself. You can’t help anyone if you can’t love and help yourself. So, this is where my adventure and journey begins: with God Jesus Christ.