Looking back at the years of hurt and hardship that Mandi and her children overcame, the restoration and joy they have now is powerful to see.
Mandi was married for 13 years, 10 of which she suffered physical and emotional abuse at the hands of her husband.
Desperate to make her marriage work, she catered to him, until she lost everything – including herself.
“I was raised to hold onto a marriage. You don’t divorce. I didn’t want to hurt my kids, but in the end, it just got bad,” Mandi says. “I ended up joining him in his addiction instead of leaving because I thought it might save my marriage. I thought, ‘If I can’t beat him, join him.’”
Mandi’s addiction quickly got out of control, and she ended up in prison.
“It was the first time I was ever in trouble,” she shares.
Being in jail was horrible, but at least Mandi was safe from her husband. The distance helped her see how unhealthy their marriage
was. She decided if she was going to save any part of her family, she had to leave her husband. She filed divorce paperwork from jail and Mandi’s kids went into foster care.
Mandi’s parents became her only support. But as they got older, their health deteriorated. They couldn’t be there for Mandi anymore, but she could be there for them. She devoted herself to caring for them through COPD and cancer until they died six months apart.
In their devastating absence, Mandi felt more alone than ever. She turned to drugs to try to cope and fell back into ddiction. She ended up hungry, homeless and alone.
“I was at my bottom. I had lost my children, been to prison, and watched my parents die. I had taken care of them for about a year and a half,” Mandi says.
“Thank God for the Mission. I came here for a hot meal and found out about the New Life Recovery Program.”
At the Mission, Mandi felt connected. She felt like she had a family again.
“The love and the support of the community is tremendous,” Mandi says gratefully.
The community at the Mission gave Mandi the courage to keep moving forward, towards new life.
Today Mandi and her kids and grandkids have reconciled. This will be the first time they celebrate Christmas together, as a safe, healthy family. Friends like you made their reunion possible!
Each $4.11 you give provides a Christmas meal for someone with nowhere else to go!
Give a gift today at trm.org/holidaymeals.