Life Interrupted: The Battle Against Drug Addiction – Part 1

From, Bend, Oregon, November 2, 2009

Looking at 30 year old Amber Martin now, you would never guess she spent well over ten years addicted to meth. Growing up in a broken home, saying she was abused by men she trusted, she tried marijuana first at 13 years old. By 15, she was addicted to meth. An eight ball a day habit cost her well over a hundred bucks daily. “I stole, I robbed houses, I didn’t ever sell myself or my body for drugs but I did just about everything else to make sure that I could get my high,” Amber remembers.

“Amber got arrested quite a bit on and off mainly little stuff, she got arrested on a lot of theft things, got arrested for possession of drugs we were dealing with her mainly on the streets when she was walking during the times she was really high,” said Bend Police Officer Mike Maunder.

Amber lived in motels, a van, a tent in the middle of winter. She lost custody of her children twice. Three years ago her younger brother Carl died at 25 of a heroin overdose. “It’s one drug that I never did try was heroine, but it doesn’t mean that anything I was doing was anything better, I was just dying slower,” said Martin.

August 30th 2007, sitting in a tent, surrounded by stolen merchandise, she hit rock bottom. “I remember praying that night that my life would end as it was,” said Martin.

She was arrested the next day and spent the next two years in prison on burglary, theft and possession charges. “One of the best things I think happened to her was when she got arrested, at least get her off the streets, I think she would have probably died,” said Officer Maunder.

Behind bars she went through recovery. by then meth had taken its effect. “I’m 30 years old, and I’m missing 80 percent of my teeth, gone, I feel that it wore down not only my teeth but the bones in my body, my muscles,” said Martin as she pulled out her false teeth.

Amber is now in college, working toward a career in drug and alcohol counseling and has regained custody of her precious daughters.  She said (referring to your daughter), “I lift my hands and I praise the lord because I have my mommy back. This little girl prayed for me every single night and every day that I would learn to make the right choices and I would change my life.”