Name: Kimberly Scharnhorst
From: Richland, Washington
As a pre-teen my addiction started. At first it didn’t affect my life in a negative way from what I noticed. We were saving our allowance and buying things on the weekend to use. By the time I got into High School I was getting in trouble at home and my addition was starting to show. I still kept my grades up and continued to play sports, but it was noticeable. I did graduate and was accepted into Eastern Washington University. After the first semester there was a mix up with my financial aid and I had a huge outstanding balance I was unable to pay. I had to leave school, and that’s when my addiction spiraled out of control. I was 18 working a minimum wage job, moved back home and just wanted to use. I started getting in trouble with the law and was kicked out of my parents’ house. Lost my family, license, car, home, etc. This continued for almost 10 years.
In 2015 I found out I was 4 weeks pregnant and quit that day! I asked my dad if I could move in and he reluctantly agreed. I began working through Express Employment. I was working as a Filing Clerk in an accounting office, they had let me know if I wanted to pursue my degree in accounting they would have a better position for me. When I tried to go back I still had the debt owed to Eastern Washington University. I saved up and paid it off! I now have 2 AAS Degrees, one in Accounting and a second in Business Administration. I am now enrolled in the Bachelors program at Columbia Basin College for Project Management. I have worked with a local law office and expunged my record from my past. Life has completely changed. I also work with a local non-profit organization that provided me housing after I had one year clean. Elijah Family Homes. I graduated from their program almost three years ago and now have my own house.
I will be celebrating six years clean on December 1, 2020. I am an amazing mother to a very healthy and smart five year old boy, a valued employee and an amazing student. If you would’ve told me six plus years ago that this is where I would be, I would never have believed you. “We do recover!”