Her name is Anna Hoyt, and she has struggled with alcoholism and addiction since she was 13 years old. As a child and young adult she was painfully shy. Anna never felt like she belonged and always felt alone. At first, she used alcohol to relieve her social anxiety, and she was suddenly transformed into the life of the party. Then in her late teens, she experimented with all kinds of drugs — meth, cocaine, acid, mushrooms, etc. She was 17 and strung out when her father died suddenly of a brain aneurysm.
After that, she quit her “experimentation with hard drugs,” but continued to be an alcoholic in denial. Anna got married and had a family and a career, but something was broken in her. She did not believe in God. She got divorced before she was 25 years old. During that time, she experienced several traumatic assaults that changed her forever, and led to her abusing meth. More and more things became acceptable in her life that should not have been. Years of drug abuse led to more and more trauma. She was frequently in and out of jail and it wasn’t long before she had lost everything: her children, her family, jobs, cars, a home.
Then, one day in October of 2012, she had two cerebral aneurysms rupture, causing a hemorrhagic stroke. Anna was life-flighted from CenterPoint Hospital to Research Hospital while in a coma within 20 minutes of my rupture. When she awoke from that coma, she had major cognitive disabilities: she was blind in one eye from hemorrhaging, could barely walk because she had lost her equilibrium, had frequent seizures, and had a speech impediment. She left the hospital with nowhere to go, and no rehabilitation or support.
Barely able to know what was happening to her, Anna was passed around between violent men, assaulted and abused. She couldn’t believe she had lived, and wished she hadn’t. Anna said she, “wanted to die, and that she didn’t believe in God or even human decency” She stated that she, was nothing, she was an “it”.
Until she met a woman in a jail cell who came to share the love of Jesus with her. She told her all of the awful things she’d done and that had been done to her, certain that the woman would judge her, look down on her, and turn away. But the woman did not. Bobbi Jo Reed looked Anna in her eyes and told her there is a God, and that He loves her, and is with her. Somehow, she believed her, and it changed Anna’s life forever. By looking her in the eye and telling her that she still had value no matter what she’d done or what had been done to her, Bobbi Jo showed her the love of Jesus Christ.
She still went to prison, but a seed had been planted. Anna used her time in prison to grow that seed. She had been given the precious gift of hope, and that hope gave her the purpose she needed to heal and grow physically, mentally, and most importantly, spiritually. She had met Jesus, and now she wanted to know him.
She applied to come to the Healing House upon her release. It truly is a place of healing. She became a human again, not an “it,” and she learned how to work the program of recovery. Now, she has over 6 years of recovery! She can walk and talk and see out of both her eyes! She has her sons back in her life, her family, an amazing husband, and a job that she loves here at the Healing House! Anna has a purpose in life now. She has peace and joy in her heart. She has amazing friends. She gets to share everyday with others what Jesus gave her:, “love, hope, peace and joy.”