Brandon’s Story: In His Words
I’m just a normal guy who grew up in Santa Ana and just wanted to work to earn my way through life. It’s funny because at first, I wanted to prove to everyone that I could live on my own and I did. I was making my own money, living at my own place, and doing whatever I wanted. A typical day looked like this… I would wake up and go to work. After work, I’d buy alcohol, use drugs, and spend time with my friends, just doing stupid stuff. One day I woke up and didn’t like who I had become. I didn’t have a permanent place to stay anymore and had burnt all the bridges with my family. So I decided to make a change in my life. I wanted to be happy without drugs, that’s the whole reason I joined StandUp For Kids.
I have two siblings, a younger brother and a younger sister. I love them and I can tell them anything but I feel like I’ve been a horrible role model. I do bad stuff and whether I like it or not my siblings look up to me. I don’t see them anymore but I’m trying to make a difference in my life.
The first thing I noticed was a huge change in my attitude and the environment here. It’s peaceful and everyone is nice, plus I wasn’t hanging out with bad people anymore. They’ve helped me get clean, not only off drugs but of all bad habits. StandUp For Kids has helped me learn a lot. I take in a lot of advice that leads to better choices and decisions. I am more positive and I know I can reach my goals. I’m able to converse with other people and feel happy sober.
If it wasn’t for StandUp For Kids, I’d be in jail, dead or probably still out there gang banging. Now, my main goal is just staying clean because once I’m able to do that, the sky’s the limit. I can go to school to become an architect and be successful.
The advice I’d want to give to anyone who isn’t sure if they should join StandUp For Kids or not, is to ask yourself: Are you happy with your life or the position that you’re in? Do you think that this is what you deserve to be? That’s how I look at it.