From Death to Life

Dedication: I would like to dedicate this story to Officer Mills. This is the officer that turned my life around. She is like a sister to me and I love her as if she was family because she is.💙

I want to stay Anonymous. So you will know me as Carmen. I am a 16 year old mixed girl in South Carolina. I have been searching all night for a website to share my story and I’ve finally found the one. My story begins in a hospital, as do most. My mother was a 20 year old white woman and my father, unknown. She gave birth to me alone. I grew up in foster care. If you could even call it that. When I was 1 years old, me and my older brother were taken in by a family. Soon after, my younger brother was born and we were adopted. My brothers had taken up to our new parents very easily but I was different. At the age of 6, I was diagnosed with a detachment disorder. It made it hard for me to love and connect with my new family. The only person that I really connected with was my older sister. She was also adopted into the family. But after 2 years (I was now 8) things started to go downhill. My sister who, at the time was 17 years old, met up with an older man who sexually assaulted her and left her pregnant. Within the next year, she ran away and began raising the baby with her attacker. That was the first time that I had lost someone who really had an impact on my life. The years went on and I was now 13 years old and I began exploring the world of womanhood. One night I had created a live on YouTube and I met a man who claimed to be 20. He told me everything I wanted to hear… He groomed me for the next 2 weeks until one day I was siting in my 8th grade dance class and I had made a joke about him. The teacher began asking questions and I simply told the truth. I don’t think, as a kid, I had really thought about how wrong it really was. As the next few years went on, I was in and out of abusive relationships. I really did believe it was normal. And then I had a major wake up call. After work one day, I suffered a seizure. Being in the hospital for the next couple of months caused me to be shut out from the world. I had stopped talking to the guy that was abusing me at the time along with multiple bad friends/influences. It took a total of 6 months for the doctors to diagnose what I had and it ended up being a condition where the stress and anxiety in my life caused my seizures. My mind was trapping me and telling me that my life would be over if I didn’t turn it around. From here, I kinda just knew that I had to fight. I began exploring possible careers that I could possibly take up after highschool.. maybe a teacher or an athlete..? But none of them stuck. I bounced around from idea to idea until I met a local police officer. She had been teaching a class at the police station every Monday night and that just happened to be the class I was attending at the time. She was 26 and I absolutely adored her. I did a ride-along with her and immediately fell in love with the idea of being a police officer. But it still hadn’t stuck in yet. After the ride-along, she was driving me home and she began to share her life story with me and I found myself fighting back tears. Here this woman was telling a troubled teen everything she’s never knew she needed to hear and it touched my heart. After that night, I enrolled in multiple law classes and became very involved in the local police station. I just about know all the officers there and I consider them family as do they.

I shared this story today because I’m hurt. Extremely hurt. But I also wanted to show how your past can form your future. If I’d never ended up in the hospital one year ago, I wouldn’t be back on my feet today and I never would’ve met my new family. My Police Family. And no, I chose not to name myself or anyone in this story but I’m content with being unknown. I could’ve went into detail about every little event in my life but I won’t. I just wanted to thank my family. My old one and my new one. Though, I’m still 16, I will soon be 21 and then I will serve my town right alongside the officer that saved me. Hopefully I can become a light to another young girl who needs to turn their life around too.