My family has always meant so much to me. My father died at the young age of 40 in the fall of 1985, of congestive heart failure, leaving my mother, 2 brothers and I. I had just graduated from high school that spring and was engaged to be married. My brother, Brandon, who was 16 at the time, had always had a difficult time with my father, always struggling to feel unconditionally loved and accepted. My father was hard on him, and after his death, Brandon was constantly trying to fit in. He eventually quit high school, left home and was falling into a bad group of "friends", that eventually led him to drugs. In 1989, I had just given birth to my first child, when I learned that Brandon had been involved in a bank robbery with the same group of people that had introduced him to drugs. Over the last 23 years he has struggled with his addiction. Being in and out of prison for different reasons, all related to his drug problems, an attempted suicide, a near miss from death of a drug overdose, failed relationships and 3 children later, he is still struggling. He has always been a good worker and a very likable man. He tried going back to school at the age of 46, majoring in computer science, with having great grades, we were very proud of him. He helped my other brother,Ron, with his business while he was away in Afghanistan, and being a carpenter, is very good at building and fixing things. He has tried so many times to stay clean, only to relapse. We know that if it weren't for the drugs, he would be a successful entrepreneur.
It has been insurmountable for my family and his children. Praying that Brandon would seek God's help and look to his family for our love and support to save him and his children. In my life, my brothers addiction has affected my whole family. It's so hard to constantly witness someone you love, so much, refuse to listen or get help. Not even for their children that love him so much and are parentless because of drugs. Being in the drug world led him to women addicted aslo. It has been a struggle for us with the mother's of his children, to love, nurture and take care of them the way we believe they should be. In clashing with the other families it has been very hard. In hopes that the children will not follow in their mother and fathers footsteps and rather be forgiving, God loving, productive adults in our society some day. I try to teach them and my own children to love their country, and how so many have fought for their freedoms. That living by God's word is how we can have a happy life. It is the blueprint God has given us all, for our lives. Adam is a hero to me and his story has given me the courage to fight for my brothers children. To be determined to do what is right, even if it is hard or doesn't make since sometimes. I have endured a lot of heartbreaking times through my brothers problems. It hasn't been easy for my husband or our children, to understand why I fight for Brandon's kids. I know that there will be sacrifices and that God is in control. I pray for his guidance in this endeavor, and I follow my heart. As I sit here writing this story, my brother, who we thought, was finally on his way to a new life, has once again succumbed to the evil grip of addiction, and is sitting in jail once again, and has taken himself away from his family and children whom love him so much. I know this story doesn't have a happy ending, yet. But, I have faith that someday it will. After his court dates, and he gets settled into where he will be incarcerated for the next several years, I am sending him Adam's story. In hopes that it will reach his heart and help him to know that he can have victory in his life.