My name is Kayla Howell, I am 24 years old. I was addicted to meth and heroine for two year; I also lost my daughter Starla when she was a year and a half. I have been struggling from my addiction and the loss of my daughter for a very long time. But by the grace of God, my mother was able to have legal guardianship of he; I was very grateful, but still very deep in my sickness. Then I had gotten into some legal trouble-I was under the influence of Meth and I was so desperate to see my child. I was in Victorville, CA and in the early morning hours, I saw a car running with no one inside the vehicle. So I instantly jumped in and stole the car and I was on my way to the freeway heading toward Big Bear Lake, CA where my daughter was. I had not seen her in months. As I was waiting for the light to change, the owner of the car was in another car. He saw me and said, “Give me back my car,” and I heard a click of a gun being loaded. I instantly slammed on the gas and sped on the freeway until I lost him. I made it twenty-six miles from Victorville, CA to Barstow, CA until I ran out of gas. I ended up missing the road I was supposed to be on to Big Bear. So I left the vehicle and started walking into the Barstow hills. But I ended up turning around and going back to the main road. I was so lost and out of my mind. Then an FBI agent pulled me over and I confessed everything about the stolen vehicle. Then the police came and I was arrested on September 27th, 2017 for Grand Theft Auto and possession of a stolen vehicle and was sentenced to 155 days at West Valley Detention Center and 3 years of probation. I got out November 20th, 2017. Now you may ask how the Set Free Women’s Ranch has changed my life- Well here is the answer to that question. I arrived at Set Free on Tuesday December 19th, 2017 at about 3PM. I had called earlier that day, but wasn’t able to complete the over the phone intake due to loss of signal. But earlier that morning I had to meet with my probation officer for the first time. I had recently relapsed off meth, I was so lost, alone, and homeless. Nobody was able to help me. But then a friend’s mom gave me the information about Set Free. So when I met with my probation officer, he called me out about using. Before he could violate me and send me off to jail again, I told him I was homeless, desperate to get out of my addiction and told him about Set Free Women’s Ranch. He approved me to go and told me to get my life together. Honestly that was the best gift I ever received for Christmas. Even though it meant another Christmas without my beautiful daughter Starla, it also meant that her mommy was finally going to get better. In the future I can and will be able to spend time with her in the years to come. When I arrived, Mrs. A, Miss Kathy, Miss Kerri, and the Set Free ladies welcomed me home with open arms and loving hearts. I haven’t felt loved and accepted anywhere in a very long time. The two months actually that I have been at Set Free, I actually feel I accomplished completing this program. Being here, I have noticed a major difference in myself and my walk with God. I no longer crave or want or even have any desire to use meth, heroine, or even weed or any substance at all for that matter. It feels good to finally have a clear mind and to be sober for the first time in the past two years. The Word of God is so powerful and my love for Jesus is so strong that I have no desire to go back on the road I came from. I feel like I am actually human again and my focus is set on straight to be and stay sober, letting go of the past and letting God work on my future. But most importantly I’m focusing on being Starla’s mother again after two years of my absence. God has answered all my prayers. I was baptized January 21, 2018.
I now also have a chance to gain custody of my daughter again. I will now be focusing on taking drug classes, parenting classes and counseling for the next three months and I can sign a 380 form for custody with my lawyer and get custody of my Starla back. I also will be staying with a friend so I won’t be homeless anymore and I will have visitations with my daughter. I want to thank the leadership of Set Free for all their love, care and kindness, and very most importantly their guidance and wisdom for setting me on the right path. I have learned so much within the past two months and I am looking forward into continuing my walk with Christ and getting my daughter back. I will continue to trust in God’s Word and work on my life with God by my side. Thank you so much Set Free Women’s Ranch for saving my life and my relationship with God. Bless You All.
Kayla Chana Howell