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I was raised in a Christian home and attended Christian School from preschool to third grade. However, both of my parents struggled with drugs, primarily pot. By the time, I was 3 years old, my parents had separated. I went back and forth between them until I was 12 years old, and then I lived full time with my Dad, largely because I couldn’t get along with my mother.
I moved 7-8 times during my childhood. Moving a lot as a kid is hard because you never know if this is really your home or if you are going to suddenly must up and leave again. I started drinking at 14 and experimenting with drugs at age 16. Within a year I was playing around with meth. I tried it because my best friend had started using.
Before long I was fully addicted and my relationship with my parents and others degenerated greatly. I continued to abuse drugs and was in an abusive, unhealthy relationship with a man until I was 28. I was not doing anything with my life. I was just living in that ugly lifestyle.
I believed in God but definitely wasn’t walking close to him. I lived with my dad till I was 23 years old. He moved to Arizona and met my step mom, while I continued to live in California. Today I am thankful that both my parents are sober and have been for a long time. However, as they became sober I continued to abuse drugs. I did not care about anything much and certainly did not care about myself.
In 2012 I entered a rehab in California with hope of becoming sober for approximately two years. However, the love of my life, a man named Keith, passed away from alcoholism. I relapsed, quit my job, stopped attending college, and my life went on a fast-downward spiral. I hung around with the wrong crowd and used meth, staying up for 5-6 days at a time, until I became very sick. On April 5, 2014 I went with a friend to sell two ounces of meth in Bullhead City. I was arrested and by the grace of God was only charged with a misdemeanor. That night forever changed my life. I have been sober ever since.
I have lived here in Arizona since that night. My family helped me find a women’s Christian shelter in Phoenix. I was blessed to have a place to receive support in my recovery and encouragement in my walk with God. I successfully completed the program. However, I met a man in the men’s program and became pregnant with my son, Keith Tyler, who though he was born not in the best of circumstances, I see as my gift from God. Even though Keith and I were safe at the shelter it was just that, a shelter. This shelter was intended for women only, not women with children. Worse, the shelter struggled with such an infestation of bed bugs that my son was being eaten alive. Slowly I was becoming engulfed with depression and hopelessness not being able to find a home for myself and Keith. Then one day a woman, who graduated 20 years ago from The Bridge (now, the Bridge to Hope), told me about their ministry. I found the number and called. Amy Sue’s voice was like that of an angel when she said the magic words “we have an opening”. I get chills just thinking about it. I did a phone interview, filled out the application and within a week I had a home. I was accepted in to The Bridge to Hope.
On that day, July 2, 2015 my son and I had a home, a two-bedroom apartment fully furnished ready for us. I was ecstatic. My church and church team were amazing. I fell in love with them quickly. Because I so wanted to make a life for Keith and I stayed determined to follow the program and what it had to offer. Shortly afterwards I got my first job working as a kennel technician at a kennel for dogs for a few months. I love and always had a passion for animals so this was amazing. The Lord then opened another door, working as a Barista. There I received the employee of the month award. I really loved and enjoyed my job. During this time, I also became very involved with the ministry Beyond Fear to Freedom. I received mentoring and support through BFF, and today I am table leader for other women. The Lord brought Christine into my life through BFF. We became close friends. Christine worked for a law firm as a paralegal. She introduced to her friend, now my friend and my new boss. You heard it right I got hired as a file clerk at the law firm. God is so good to me.
I gained so much during my time at The Bridge to Hope. I took care of all my debt to court and all my outstanding bills. I obtained my driver’s license which I had never had. I am not saying I never drove, I just never drove legally! I purchased a car for me and my son to get to work, daycare and all the other fun activities that are open to you when you have a vehicle. I also was able to accumulate an amazing savings. I graduated from The Bridge to Hope September 3, 2016. Since then I have moved into my beautiful 2-bedroom apartment which I really love and where I feel safe. My relationships with my family have been fully restored. I made really amazing friendships with those at my church, the First Southern Baptist Church of Scottsdale, as well as at BFF and certainly with other Bridge mom’s.
I continue to attend BFF and am a member of my sponsoring church FSBCS. My desire is to move up with my employer, and maybe one day own a home. If God wills it, I’d love to find a Godly man that can be a father figure in Keith’s life. I mostly just enjoy spending time with my son and all the blessings God bestows on me on a daily basis. – Amber
Bridge to Hope
Bridge to Hope
1815 W. Missouri Ave #105
Get In Touch
The Bridge to Hope, Inc.
A Transformational Housing Ministry for homeless single mothers.
Address: 1815 W. Missouri Ave #105
Phoenix, Arizona 85015
Phone: 602.589.5556 (Phone & Fax)
Business Hours: 8:30a-3:00p M-F, or by Apointment