Alcohol and other drug addictions devastate the lives of hundreds of thousands of American children and their families each year. Eightyfive percent of states surveyed report of parental substance abuse and poverty are the top two problems in child protective caseloads." My two younger sisters, my little brother and I are among those percentages. Both our mother and our father suffered from methamphetamine addiction. I believe that every person lets a personal experience encourage them to make decisions throughout their lifetime.
It was an eighty degree, breezy summer day in 2005 and the youth bible study group, for the neighborhood that I lived in, gathered at Bennett Park for the first ever youth kickball game.
Kids of all ages that lived in the neighborhood attended along with parents and teachers.
Approximately fortyfive minutes into the game a police car accompanied by a white sedan pulled into the parking lot and parked right beside our field. Standing in the kicking line, I couldn’t help but notice that they quickly exited their cars and made their way up the five stairs and up the paved path to our gated field. Priscilla, one of the leaders of the group, met them at the gate door. I couldn’t hear what being said but the confused yet sad look that consumed her face let me know instantly that whatever it was couldn’t be good. “Ashley, Kristin, Amber and
Dylan please come here” Priscilla called. I kept my face down, staring at the darkened green grass while my own shadow shaded my face from the beaming sun as I moped toward the gate door. My siblings wasted no time making their way over. “Sweetheart these people are here to take you all somewhere safe because it is not safe for you all to go home right now” she said discreetly. Instantly our sun kissed cheeks were covered by tears. “Please, walk this way with us
and don’t worry about clothes because some of your own are in the car” the tall, skinny brunette woman said. All four of us did as we were told and made our way to the cars at the other end of the field. Before we got the chance to get in the car, the entire group of about thirty people surrounded the two cars saying their farewells as fast as they could. After the farewells we were buckled in the car and ready to go when Priscilla made her way to my door, opened it and said
“We will all be praying for your family and we will see you again soon.” I was devastated, how could she possibly believe that in the midst of what just happened to us!? Even though my face was already flushed, I could feel it burning from the embarrassment of what everyone just witnessed. It was after hours when we arrived at the Department of Family and Children Services so the tall brunette had to call someone who worked for the office to keep us for the night. The next morning around eight we were in a grey Dodge mini van headed up 400 towards Dahlonega.
About an hour later, the van pulled into the driveway of a white house enclosed by a white picket fence and a large wooden swing set with a blue plastic slide attached to the right side. We got out of the van and went in to a door located at the back of the house. When we entered the house there were four other kids lingering around. We made our way from the dining room down the hallway to our rooms. When I realized that my brother was in a room all by his self I felt a wave of anger overtake me. “My brother has never slept alone in a room before!” I shouted. “I’m sorry but girls and boys can not share rooms in this facility” the German lady sternly said. My two sister’s shared a room and I was stuck in a room with a complete stranger, whose name was
Erica Johnson. Everything that had happened in the past fortyeight hours had taken a toll and