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Natalie's story

Natalie's story

I was a binge drinker.

I would go for days without a drink but then when I did drink I drank very heavily and it turned very, very dark. It gripped me. It overtook everything in my whole life. I was selfish, self-centred and I didn’t care about anyone but myself.

My rock bottom with my alcoholism took me to very, very dark places. Extremely dark. I ended up in a cemetery on the day that I was supposed to be at work. With a bottle of rum, I sat there all day and just spoke to spirits and I pleaded with God. I just sat there in desperation. Just wanting hope, just wanting a way out.

That’s what took me to Dooralong [The Salvation Army’s Transformation Centre on the NSW Central Coast] and that’s what changed my life. I believe that … God answered my prayers that day. At that time, I was broken, beyond broken. There was nothing left of myself. I needed love and I needed nurture. The Salvos were there for me and … they showed me that I was worth it. They believed in me and they gave me strength and I’m forever grateful for that. 

My life now is amazing. The gifts of sobriety keep coming. It’s LIVING. There’s no more self-centredness, there is just love in my heart now and I want to be able to give that to others. My hopes and plans for the future are limitlessness. They’re just unending. [I want] to be a really good mum and the best I can be to my kids. [I want] to live a fulfilled life with peace and happiness and love in my heart. Hope for me once was desperation, whereas now hope lives in my heart.

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Hope where it's needed most