My name is Shawna. I am forty years old. Last night I stayed at a friend’s house.
My friend, she allows me to stay there because I have nowhere else to go and I help them out, too, by giving them a little bit of rent and because I’m sober. I’ve been sober three years.
I became homeless because I’m an alcoholic. And I lost my children.
My mother my father got divorced when I was six months old and I went to live with my mom and she was an alcoholic. When I was 8 years old my mom took me to Arizona and she left me. And when she left me I thought it was all my fault that she left me. And things happened to me and I also thought that was my fault. As I got older I started having children of my own and I didn’t have no one to help me know how to be a mother or anything.
Three years ago I sobered up because my oldest child called me and told me she was gonna have a baby, so I sobered up so I could see my grandchildren. My boyfriend gives me strength because he’s been sober--January first it will be eleven years. And my grandchildren give me strength because I think of how I treated my children and I was wrong and I’m trying to change it so I can help my daughter better herself for her children.