By Theresa LaFeve
Being a mom was something I was first able to experience at 20-years-old. A year later, I would give birth to my second child. Like many, my addiction only grew after both my daughters’ births.
In 2015, I would travel to every trap house looking for meth with my daughters in the backseat. The days were long as we would spend hours and sometimes days in our family vehicle doing everything except being an actual family.
The truth was a true family atmosphere was something I never knew. As a child,Mother’s Day with my mom often meant watching her drink with her husband and my uncle. At the same time, my uncle was grooming me and abusing me when my mother wasn’t looking.
The trauma piled up. I dropped out of school at 16-years-old and started dabbling in self-harm and drug use. That year I found myself in my first adolescent treatment center.
I was caught
It didn’t take long for Child Protective Services to step in and take both, my daughters, away. I want to say that this was my rock bottom, but it wasn’t.
I spent the next 2 1/2 years chasing my new drug of choice instead of chasing my children. I didn’t bother to go to court and fight for my children because I already knew the outcome in my mind.
My life had turned into a daily game of who can I steal from or who I could use to get what I needed. I lived in my car or abandoned houses, cleaning myself in gas station bathrooms, and stealing food to get by.
In 2017 I was arrested for 14 counts of firearm theft marking one of my lowest points.
My first try at treatment
While sitting in the jail cell waiting to see the judge and detoxing simultaneously, my mind cleared, and the memories came rushing back. I thought of my daughters, who were now in the custody of their father, and desiring to be the mom I needed to be.
With a new goal in mind, I called my mother, who was now living a life of sobriety and asked to go to treatment.
She took me to a treatment center in eastern Kentucky, where I found success and would meet the man I would later marry. However, with the stress of trying to hire a lawyer to see my kids and failed attempts at gaining visitation rights, I, along with my boyfriend, relapsed.
The relapse did not last long. Finally, my boyfriend gave me the ultimatum I needed. He was going to treatment at a place called Addiction Recovery Care, and I could either join him or be alone with no hope of getting my kids back.
I was terrified. I didn’t think a life without drugs was possible.
I felt love and compassion when I entered Karen’s Place in Lawrence County, Kentucky.. No longer was I judged for my past, I wasn’t looked down on for being an absent mother. Instead, I was face to face with other girls who were feeling the same way that I was.
During the first 60 days of my recovery, I started dealing with my past traumas, learned skills to maintain my sobriety, had my first encounter with God, and began understanding his love for me despite my fault.
I also hit my biggest roadblock when. I learned my children’s father abused them, and investigators removed them from his home. I wanted to leave treatment to be with my children. However, I quickly realized I had little to offer the situation, and I had to trust God to care for my children until I could.
Finding success and finding motherhood
Once completing treatment, we went through a heated custody battle for my girls after more abuse occurred.
The same judge who put a no-contact order between my kids and me, Granted me sole custody of my girls in November of 2021.
We have been reunited with my husband’s son and have watched God restore a relationship that the courts ended years ago.
We have had to learn how to be parents again, which is not easy. My kids have deep wounds, and it has not been easy. We struggle. Life is not easy. But we know we don’t have to use today to deal with life.
Advice: Motherhood is waiting for you
If you are struggling with addiction, I can be the proof that you need to see that recovery is possible.
This Mother’s Day, my kids are here and home with the mom they needed since they were born. This can be you too.
About Theresa LaFeve
Theresa LaFeve serves Addiction Recovery Care as the Administration Manager. She helps manage the day-to-day operation of the Office of Administration as well as big picture development.
Theresa is seen within the walls of Addiction Recovery Care as a prime example on how empowering others can lead to life changing results.