From the March 2010 magazine.

In the game

A star athlete and straight A student relies on alcohol to fit in

AS I sit here after my third-period class and ponder why I became a teacher, I remember my primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety. I sit back, take a deep breath and count my blessings, everything I tell my sponsees to do.

I was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1966 with a club foot, so my father thought I would be a cripple--or at least he said that to my mom and made her cry. I think from my first breath I thought something was wrong with me. When I was 5, we moved to an 87-acre farm with horses, cows, pigs, dogs, cats and chickens outside of Bowling Green, Ohio. I had four brothers and I wanted to be like them and follow them everywhere, but they would always say, "Go home! You're a girl and we don't want you!"

-- JILL S

San Diego, Calif

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