I have three children. One day, they showed me a video of myself. It broke my heart. I was getting high instead of being a good mom. I lost custody of them. My kids told me that they needed me in their lives and asked me to get help.
Alone in a new city. Homeless. Without food or any means of support. Dalton was in the place where the lost, disconnected, and outcast go. If you’ve ever driven by Coronado Park, you know it can be a dangerous place. It’s definitely not family friendly.
And then Dalton met Ben and everything changed.
At age 13, I became pregnant with my junior high boyfriend and for two years we were the best parents teenagers could be – until my father was killed. After this, I ran from the age of 15 to 35. I started using heroin, prostituting, and spent a total of 12 years in and out of jail. So many things happened during these years I know God must of placed angels around me.
My brother passed away from brain cancer. I went through a divorce. I was devastated emotionally. And I turned away from God. My life fell apart.
I turned to alcohol. It got so bad that my family couldn’t help me anymore. I came from a great Christian family. I was embarrassed. I had nothing left. I tried going to my church but I needed something more.
Honestly, I didn’t want to come to Steelbridge. I literally prayed to God to send me to a place where Christ was not at the center. It’s ironic, right? Praying to God to send me to a place where He wasn’t.
Darren was living in an abandoned church. He was homeless.
He felt like God was calling him to change his life.
Darren was listening to a song by his favorite band and felt like he needed to get to a bridge. First, he thought he needed to get to San Francisco, to the Golden Gate Bridge. If he couldn’t make it to San Francisco, he wanted to get to the sky bridge out over the Grand Canyon.
Betty’s life began in tragedy. At 4 years old, trouble with her biological mother placed her with a different family - who ended up adopting Betty.
When she was 16, her entire family died in one year. Her biological dad died of a heart attack. Her foster mom and brother were killed in a car accident and her other brother died of sepsis
Betty was angry at God. This became the story of her life. Life constantly taking. Betty felt she must not be worthy of love. If she was worthy, why did bad things seem to follow her everywhere?
After a traumatic brain injury, Tracy found himself homeless and lost on the streets of Albuquerque. He was out of money. He had spent the last of it at a motel the night before.
Someone had told him about a different homeless shleter he could stay at. They had given directions but somehow he got turned around and ended up at Steelbridge by mistake. He was standing outside the doors, when a Steelbridge staff member invited him in to get something to eat.
Tracy not only got something to eat, He got a new life.
“I wanted to be a man. A leader. But I ended up becoming a menace to my community. I was destorying it with my gang lifestyle and criminal mentality. I was stealing cars and doing drugs. “
Believe it or not, Alonzo grew up as a very shelted child. “I had grown up as a sheltered kid. But I wanted a different life. My big mistake was not listening to my parents. I rebelled. They told me to do one thing and I wanted to do the opposite.”
They come from every walk of life. Some were raised in affluent families. Many have college degrees. It is shocking how many have held leadership positions in corporate America, earning six-figure incomes. They have families and have owned homes and nice cars. Yet, somehow they ended up homeless on Albuquerque’s streets. Alone. Addicted. Groping for their humanity.
American is the wealthiest, most educated and technologically advanced nation in human history. Why does a nation with only 4% of Earth’s population consume 80% of the opioids? What pain are we trying to numb?