Adrienne, mother of two and NAZ parent, has come a long way in a short amount of time. With support from her family achievement coach Lucretia, early childhood support from Northside Child Development Center, and Project for Pride in Living her life is dramatically different.
A few years ago, Adrienne was lost. Her first son, Achilles was still in diapers and her second, Prince was on the way.
“I had a lot of things going on. I was dwindling in addiction.” She was in a tumultuous romantic relationship and not able to hold down a good job.
“I found ways to cope with the unhappiness I was feeling, the depression that I was feeling, I didn’t know what it was called I just thought that I liked doing drugs and I kinda liked getting high. Because I chose to use, I chose to partake in illegal activities which introduced me to a whole different ball game of trouble. I got into check fraud.”
Because of the nature of the check fraud, Adrienne was placed on federal probation.
“Federal probation is a lot different than regular probation. They’re a lot tougher, you kind of don’t know what’s going to happen. I didn’t have any children when I did the fraud, but by the time it caught up with me I had a child and I was pregnant. I was also using. I was using because I was depressed and depressed because I was using. When I gave birth to my second son he had drugs in his system.”
Adrienne also violated her probation, so while recovering from the birth of her son she was informed that Federal Marshalls were looking for her. She was allowed to turn herself in, but without knowing what was going to happen to her when she did.
“I had to turn myself in, after all the emotions [of giving birth] with nobody with me, and know that my son was still in the hospital. I had to be in jail for a month, in that most crucial time and that is what really woke me up to never wanting to be there again, ever. I never want to feel what that felt like ever again.”
“I got out and had to start over from scratch and get my kids back and work hard to get them back. I was taking NA and AA classes, I had a parenting coach, taking classes like College Bound Babies, and making sure I was staying on the right track.”
Adrienne’s scholars were enrolled in New Horizons when she heard about NAZ and started working with a Lucretia, a NAZ Family Achievement Coach.
“I am one of those people who are open to better myself. I fell in love with it. I fell in love with the fact that we had to make goals for ourselves. I fell in love with the fact that [Lucretia] was personable and she cared. And she listened to me and she knew what I needed.”
In our College Bound Babies and Foundations classes, she was able to learn and tap into a healing community.
“You come together and learn all these new things and get all these new tools, I’m all about tools. I felt like getting together with other women [I was able to] break some of those generational curses we grew up with.”
“We accumulate all these different things over time, mom and sister and wife and addict, all these different things that we accumulate over time, we forget that we’re important, we forget that we’re lovable, we forget that we’re empowered. We forget all these things because the world has put so much on top of us. We forget about ourselves. Classes like Foundations are so crucial to women in our community and I think that more women need to be told about this. If I could have pulled every woman around me to take those classes I would have.”
Adrienne has worked extremely hard. She now works at a job she loves at Breaking Bread, she has custody of her two sons, and NAZ partner People for Pride in Living has partnered with her with a new place to live, on her own.
“When I meet people and I talk about NAZ I’m so invested because I know where it got and I know how much happier I am and I know how much more empowered I am and I know how much I’ve learned. I think more women and people should know about NAZ. I love it and I live it.”