BETH PEARSON IMAGE My name is Beth and I’m in recovery. December 2nd, 2008 I used meth for the last time and pray daily that it was my last time. I’ve been asked several times, why at 31, self-employed a very profitable business, two beautiful daughters 7 and 12, a three bedroom home, new sports car and stable relationships with my family and friends, would I ever try meth? Why? Because it was offered to me. Because I had recently gone through a divorce. Because I was dating a drug user and tried to keep up with his life style for almost six months. Because my self-esteem had always suffered. Why my self-esteem had never been good is still a question I ask myself daily. If I ever figure that one out I will be rich. All addicts suffer with low self-esteem. That’s why most of us use. The drugs give a feeling of self-esteem, even if it was a false sense. We finally fit in and have a whole new set of friends, or so we think that they are our friends.

October 30th, 2003 I went to a party in my apartment complex and was handed a small wad of toilet paper. I asked what it was and was told that it was meth.  I asked if it would make me throw up and was told that it wouldn’t. Then I asked how it would make me feel. “Good” was the answer. “You will have energy and feel really happy” So, just like that I swallowed the wafer, or wad of toilet paper with crystal meth inside. I went upstairs to my sleeping boyfriend and said “Tina said take this and get to the party”. He immediately jumped up, snorted the meth and began to get ready. A few minutes later I began to feel the effects of the meth. My boyfriend looked at me and said “You took some didn’t you?” I replied “Yes”. The words he spoke to me, I will never forget. He said “You just f**ked your life up. In a year you won’t have anything. You will lose your house, your car, your business and will never want to see your daughters”. “I can handle it” I replied. He laughed and said “No you can’t!! It’s meth”

They say if you try meth once, you might be able to walk away from it. Try it twice and you’re addicted. From that night on until December 2nd, 2008 I used daily. Unless I was sleeping which wasn’t often, or in jail, I used and I used a lot. Less than a year later I had lost my 3 bedroom home and was living with my mom. My car had been wrecked due to driving drunk and then repossessed. I lost all my clientele and I made up excuse after excuse why I couldn’t be with my daughters.

I remember one night my youngest clinging to my leg begging me not to leave.  It was 10:00 at night and my girls were in tears, screaming for me to please stay home and sleep with them. But I couldn’t. I had to go chase the sack. I physically pushed my daughter off as she clung to my leg. The hell I put family through is heart breaking to think about.

I remember bragging saying “I do drugs, they don’t do me” I was never so wrong!! Meth did me in. I had just used for 9 months. Soon I had to find a way to pay for my increasing habit. So, like most addicts I began to sell. The next five years were a blur. Using, selling, sex with anyone I wanted and anyone that would make my boyfriend jealous. Sanity, morals and dignity slipping away. Soon I just didn’t care, and when you don’t care you’re a very dangerous person. So many times I feel asleep driving, had guns pulled on me, I walked into dope houses and hotel rooms alone with bags full of dope and wads of cash; a target to be robbed, raped and killed. I went from bad boys to extremely dangerous men. I thought I ruled the world. I had the dope, the money, the men and people jumped when I said jump, if they wanted their dope. I lost cars, clothes, jewellery, time, memories, and my clean record. I was arrested time and time again. I was given chance after chance to change. After each arrest I thought I could be slicker than the Feds and city cops. I found myself facing life in prison with Federal charges. I had sold to an undercover ATF agent. They had busted me with an accumulative amount of 24 pounds of meth and my “friends” had ratted me out. The state was pressing charges of trafficking and on top of all that, I was pregnant. I had gotten pregnant and had a miscarriage back in November of 2005. That was the best thing for my unborn child; I was using and selling big time and had yet to be caught. That baby would have been born addicted and the state would have taken it away. I was hoping I would miscarry with this pregnancy as well.

Two and half months into the pregnancy I sat in a hotel room with who I thought was my baby’s daddy’s best friend. The truth is I had no clue who the dad was. It was between two men I had been in a relationship with, one for four years and the other just over a year. Anyway, I had decided it would be best if I tried to have a drug induced miscarriage. We loaded two syringes with over a gram of dope. We each found a vein on each arm and shot it up knowing it would kill the baby inside me and might even kill me. I was okay with both of those outcomes. The results were that I threw up and was higher than I had ever been before; the effects lasted about three days. No spotting, no cramping, nothing.

One night in November my long term boyfriend and I got into a fight. He was angry I was using dope while pregnant. He was scared because the Feds were breathing down his back. I had been arrested again and had my brand new Charger impounded and $7,000 taken away when I was arrested. I was on his couch with nothing and I was putting a damper on his sex life. He told me I had to go. He was sick of me and no longer loved me. I was sick and he hated who I had become. A junkie was sick and embarrassed of another junkie?

I knew what laid ahead for me- prison for life. I knew what I had already become to my family- dead. I was never around and avoided their phone calls. They went weeks and weeks not knowing if I was dead or alive. I thought my girls would be better off without me. They needed a mom who would love them and actually be a part of their lives. This baby didn’t deserve to be born in prison and be another child of the system. I had lost all hope. So I wrote a goodbye letter to my boyfriend asking him to say goodbye to my family also. I texted him and said I had taken all the pain pills I could find and apologized if when I died, I left a mess in the bed. Once I had taken the pills, I called my dog up on the bed beside me and fell asleep. I woke up in the back of an ambulance sitting in front of my house with charcoal being poured down my throat. IV’s in my arms and an oxygen mask on. I looked out the window and saw a car pull into my driveway. A girl got out, my boyfriend went to get her and they went inside our house. That feeling…he already had a chick in our bed and he didn’t know if I was going to live or die.

Once they got me stable at the hospital, they admitted me to the behavioral medicine unit across the street, the “nut house”. I found out the next day that the baby had survived and it was a healthy little girl. I looked up at the ceiling and asked God “Why?” A week later I was allowed to leave. My boyfriend picked me up and took me to my mom’s and she insisted that I go to treatment. I sat in her bathtub with a syringe full of the last little bit of meth I had. My arms were so bruised and had knots all over them, from all the times I had missed my vein. My veins were shot, but by God I was going to find one somewhere. The water became cold and full of blood. The syringe had more blood in it than dope and I knew when I finally found a vein the dope would be so diluted, I wouldn’t be able to get high off it. Because of the disease and my insanity, I kept trying. I remember looking down at my pregnant belly, sitting in cold, bloody water and every so often a ripple would flow through the water, when the baby would kick. Tears falling down onto my stomach, I was sick and tired and hated myself. I was too sick to live and too weak to stop getting high.

The Road to Recovery

I slept the next two days solid. I woke up and had convinced my mom to let me take her car to go get a new driver’s license; in reality I was going to my boyfriend’s to get high. Before I got off the couch, the doorbell rang; it was the Feds, and they were looking for me. I yelled across the living room for them to come back with a warrant. I smoked a cigarette and jumped in the shower and waited. My 17 year old did something that day she never did; she came home for lunch to see her mom. For once she knew where I was. When she turned on to her Nana’s street, there were over 30 police, ATF, US Marshall, Drug Task Force, FBI and Sheriff’s cars lined up on the street. She thought I had finally succeeded in killing myself. She walked in to witness her mom with 5 guns pointed at her head.

I stayed in jail until by the grace of God; I was allowed to go to rehab. On April 6th, 2009, with three and a half months clean my third daughter was born; healthy, perfect and with her two big sisters in the room. I graduated rehab October 7th, 2009 and on December 15th I received my sentence. My attorney, the Federal DA and the judge had met the day before and signed for me to do three years. I was to leave the courtroom that day and go to prison.

Let me go back to August 17th, 2009, before the sentencing and while I was in rehab. On this day God spoke to me. I had been praying every chance I got since coming to rehab that God would please, please keep me out of prison. I begged Him to let me raise my girls. I lived each moment in fear of losing my girls when I went to prison. I was not enjoying life. I was imprisoned by my own thoughts. On August 17th I was on pass at church. I took my baby to the nursing room and began to pray while she nursed. The same prayer, begging God not to send me to prison. And after I finished praying, I felt Him walk in the room, walk across the room and sit in the rocking chair beside me. He said these things to me “Beth relax. You’re not going to prison. I’ve kept you in rehab this long so you can recover. Be patient with me, it’s almost over”. At that moment my entire world changed. I began to really live. I told everyone I wasn’t going to prison because God had spoken to me. I loved every moment with my kids and the fear of not having them lifted. My prison walls had crumbled. So when my attorney called me the day before I was to be sentenced and said they had signed for me to do three years, my world crumbled. I had to go home and tell my girls that I was going to prison the next day. I had to look them in the eye and apologize for screwing their lives up.

I told them I wished that I was dead, because that would be less embarrassing than having to tell their friends their mom was in prison for drugs. My oldest daughter who was now 18 was going to take over guardianship of my baby. My middle daughter asked me if I was a liar. I said “I try hard not to be these days”. She replied “well you said God told you that you weren’t going to prison”. She was right!! I got the elders and ministers together from my church and we prayed for hours. One elder prayed for the judge to have a sleepless night, one prayed that this be the hardest case he had ever had to render and another for him to be in turmoil about what to do with me.

There had been over 70 letters written to the judge on my behalf and the courtroom was packed for my sentencing. There were over 50 people inside the courtroom and the rest in the hallway, including my 13 year old and my 9 month old daughter. My oldest daughter was in the front row, waiting for her mother to be sentenced. This is something NO child should ever have to do. The judge walked out of his chambers and called me to the bench. The first words out of his mouth were these “I didn’t sleep last night. I was in turmoil about what to do with you Ms. Pearson. In my 25 years of being a Judge, I’ve never had a case this hard to render”. I turned around and everyone who had been in the prayer session the night before was open mouthed. Exactly what was prayed for was spoken. I walked out of the courtroom with five years’ probation and six months house arrest. God is good!!

My little girl is now six and just perfect. After her fourth birthday, she told me something that to this day still gives me chills. She said out of the blue one morning while waiting for her Mother’s Day Out program to open “mom I saw God”. I imagine she has seen lots of pictures of Him since we never miss church or Bible class; so I asked if she saw His picture at church. She said “No I saw Him when I was in your tummy; he came inside your tummy twice. He has really big arms. He held me and said He loved me and that everything was going to be ok. I asked Him who He was and He said ‘God’”. That story blew me away and still does!! If ever God was to intervene in her life, it was at the two most dangerous times of my pregnancy. When I attempted a drug induced miscarriage and when I attempted suicide.

I believe God is alive and very active in an addict’s life! I now put the same energy and effort into my recovery as I did my using. I have learned to truly love myself. That same mirror I once did lines of dope off of; I can look in today and love the woman staring back. I’m happily married to the answer to my prayers. We said I do on December 7th, 2012 in front of over 400 friends & family.

I received a letter from the United States Probation Offices congratulating me on successfully completing my probation. I wrote a letter to the Judge over my case, thanking him for his mercy and told him all I had done to better myself and all I was blessed to witness over the past 5 years. College, marriage, my daughter’s High School graduation & her first day at college, proms and more. I told him I had the honor of being the keynote speaker at the 4th annual Meth Awareness Rally in Bakersfield, California in 2014. I also got to travel to Del Ray Beach, Florida and speak at a huge recovery gala, which was filmed. I’ve been interviewed twice by local news stations on meth stories. I have a published poem that I wrote about meth. I have also have travelled all over Oklahoma speaking at various Celebrate Recovery meetings and Narcotics Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. I’m currently writing a book and have had part of my story published in a book called Breaking Chains.

In April of 2015 my husband, my oldest 2 daughters & my 2 step daughters got to witness the birth of my 4th perfect daughter. I have now been clean almost 3 years longer than I used, I attend meetings regularly and have a sponsor. I sponsor others and have a strong relationship with God and my family. I’ve been forgiven and I am trusted. My oldest daughter told me I was “her hero” while still in rehab. I am my middle daughter’s best friend and the love of all my girls is my rock. I put them through hell but they have seen the power of prayer and that recovery does work.

I now have the answer to my “Why?” when I asked God why my baby survived my overdose. My “Why” is a happy, fulfilled life with my family, free of meth. Memories made with my family and something to be grateful for each & every day.

As I write this it’s been over 7 years and 10 months, meth free, but who’s counting?