When an opioid addiction strikes home

Brooke Holderfield shares her story on how opioid addiction affected her family. Photo: WBMA

HAYDEN, Ala. (WBMA) - Brooke Holderfield is a life coach at Alabama Teen Challenge—a faith-based program that helps drug addicts turn their lives around.

“Obedience to God,” Brooke tells a group of recovering female drug addicts as they review a study guide.

“We’re going to do the true and false ones,” she said as she begins going through a questionnaire. “To obey God’s law is one of the most important things you can do as a Christian. Is that true or false?

“True,” her students replied.

Brooke is a former drug addict. She got hooked while dating her boyfriend who was also an addict.

“We started using Lortab and Oxycontin,” Brooke said. “That evolved into Dilaudid and K-4’s. That eventually led to heroin.”

Holderfield’s drug use led to stealing, jail, and eventually, she lost custody of her daughter, who was just a year old at the time. Her mother, Imagene, and her father, Mark, took care of her daughter for four years.

“I was actually the one who called child services,” Brooke’s mother, Imagine Holderfield, said. “I was frightened. I was frightened for my granddaughter’s safety.”

“I felt like my identity as a mom was taken,” Brooke said. “My life was being torn apart. My family was being torn apart. I was mad and broken.”

Two years later, Brooke’s boyfriend died from a heroin overdose.

“I just hit the floor,” Brooke said. “I can’t even describe the feeling that I felt. I just remember crying a lot that day.”

Brooke went to drug rehab, and then to Alabama Teen Challenge, where she replaced her need for drugs—with God.

She’s been drug-free for nearly five years. She regained custody of her daughter. She got her life back.

“I’m very proud of Brooke and all that’s she’s accomplished and how much I’ve seen her grow,” Imagene Holderfield said.

Brooke counsels other women who are trying to stay off drugs. One success story: Hannah Carmack—a former heroin addict who was one of Brooke’s students.

“She taught me to see myself in Christ,” Hannah said. “Really to be an overcomer, too.”

Brooke has totally turned her life around. Helping others succeed is what drives her every day.

“It’s a dream,” Brooke said. “That’s what I want to do the rest of my life.”

Brooke said it feels amazing to be drug-free. She said the little things in life mean a lot these days, like seeing her daughter smile. “It’s priceless,” she said.

Meantime, Brooke has an important message for addicts trying to beat their addiction.

“Don’t give up,” Brooke said. “If you fall, get up.”

Brooke didn’t give up—and she prevailed.

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