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Kim's Story: Beauty from Ashes

My story began prior to my birth on January 8, 1991. My biological mother, while pregnant with me, was in a tumultuous, 10-year relationship with my biological father. My bio-dad was in active addiction and abusive to my bio-mom, which ultimately led her to move states, into a maternity home where she gifted me to my parents in a closed adoption. I was born with Cleft Lip & Pallet, and as early as 8 weeks old I had my first surgery leading up until 18 years old where I endured 22 surgeries.

After my treatment plan for my Cleft Lip & Pallet was complete, I remember going through an identity crisis of sorts. I looked different, and people responded differently to me. I was no longer "ugly" or a "brace face" along with other names I'd rather not mention. I became desirable and "worthy" and I didn't know how to gauge myself in this change.

I had a few boyfriends leading up to 26, none of which lasted over 6 months, and part of me enjoyed being alone. I developed some new friendships in my twenties when my family moved to Manalapan that led me to my bio-dad's DOC (drug of choice), cocaine.

Within one year of trying cocaine, that same friend introduced me to my ex. I remember my first gut feeling being a sense of discomfort or fear but it quickly transformed to infatuation. I believed myself to have met my "soulmate". He lived in Perth Amboy, he was very charming, dressed well, and he often talked about the fact that his parents were doctors. I did notice he would carry a prescription bottle around with him often. Even in the apartment, and although that was an obvious flag I didn't question it.

We had about 3 months of "perfection" until it was my birthday weekend. We were out celebrating, and I guess "I had forced him out" in his words. I saw his mood shift inside the club we were at and I asked if he wanted to leave, and he did. On our way out he bought me flowers and a stuffed animal from a flower cart. We get to my car, I'm radiating over the flowers and I begin driving, while on the parkway I notice his silence and I questioned what was wrong. Then my face hit my steering wheel.

The shock value of the first time someone physically assaults you, especially unprovoked is something I can only express from the pit of my stomach, and it is sickening.

The rest is hazy, I remember friends showing up and it broke things up quickly before they even walked in and I hid in the bathroom crying.. I went home and the next day I get a phone call like nothing happened and I felt insane. I remember trying to take some space when I discovered that I was pregnant.

A Dose of Hope

By December 11th, 2020 I had made the difficult decision to have an abortion with the man who abused me. I was no longer getting my period, I was malnourished, underweight, and completely physically dependent on Fentanyl. I was smoking close to 35 bags a day, was unemployed, and spent most of my time passed out on a bathroom floor or couch. I went to my fathers birthday dinner where my mother right away just screamed "No!" By that Sunday they had scheduled an intervention where I got clean for the very first time through Relevance Behavioral Health, and eventually, I wound up in the arms of CFC Loud N Clear Foundation.

Since then, I have had 3 short-lived relapses, but on March 23rd I will have 2 years clean, by the Grace of God. I have spent so much time in meetings, sharing, experiencing both the good and bad life has to offer, experimenting in spirituality, studying the bible, and sharing again.

CFC Loud N Clear has made a huge impact on my life, so in return I now facilitate the "SHE" Goals Women's Empowerment Meeting on Wednesday's where women meet regularly from all spectrums of pain and suffering, not only people in recovery but people experiencing loss and grief, self-love issues, Domestic Violence and more and sexual abuse.

I also run the social media marketing on all platforms for the program. I find so much fulfillment in helping others, especially women. I give my number to anyone who needs it, and reach out to those still struggling and offer resources. People in recovery I can offer job sourcing, resume building, as well as education and social opportunities.

To learn more about Kim and the resources at her Recovery Community Organization, Loud N Clear, visit:

Want to share your Bright Story of Recovery and Resilience? Check out the submission guidelines here or shoot me a message!

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