From the May 2013 magazine.

May 2013: The Best Ingredients

With one cup sponsor, 12 Steps and a pinch of hope, she cooked up a whole new life

My journey with alcohol lasted 30 years. What started out as fun and a way of fitting in with others, soon became a way of life. At the end, I was barely existing. Alcohol defined who I thought I was and who I wanted to be. It took away the love I had for myself and led me to multiple suicide attempts, including one that left me flat-lined twice in one night.

Alcoholism prevented me from taking care of my main responsibility—my son. I gave him to his father because I did not want the commitment of taking care of a child who would interfere with my partying. By the time my daughter was born, I was spending so much time in county jails and prison that I gave her up for adoption. I came to hate myself so much that I started cutting myself. I was not going to allow someone else to hurt me more than I hurt myself; I would beat everyone else to the punch. The scars from the cutting are still visible today. They are a reminder of what life used to be like.

-- Celeste D.,

Hagerstown, Maryland

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