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Know Your Worth

By Cayetana Maria Cruz-Dona

Hi, my name is Cayetana Maria Cruz-Dona. I was born Matthew Steven Dona on November 191984 at 10:30 A.M. in Detroit, Michigan.

I came from a painful, broken, abusive home and background. A child of the streets, foster system and abandonment that drove me for so many years. A life of fighting, running and survival. I developed patters and reactions that were protective and served a purpose. Growing up,  I was on the streets more than I was at home. It felt safer to be in danger. This thinking led me to some dark and dangerous places. I hurt a lot of people along the way, never settling in one place for to long.

Florida was the place I landed longest, staying there for 10 years. I have been fighting a 15 year battle. It is the hardest battle in my life and  don’t want it to win. Drug addiction to meth, crystal, crank, glass-doesn’t matter what you call it. It’s a bitch. Fifteen years of my life repeatedly relapsing. It took me a long time to get clean. I have 5 years clean and sober. I had years in between but wanting to live really sparked that change for me. The last time I used, I was losing my mind. And I signed over my health rights to my partner at the time because I did not know if I was going to come out of my psychosis. That scared the living shit out of me, I had somebody else controlling my health decisions.

I choose to fight for my life and try to achieve greatness. A need addiction if you can call it that. A need to repay my debt. I choose to accept good and bad. I choose to know my worth, to tell myself I am worth love, happiness, peace, serenity, stability, hopes and dreams. I want something different than what I've known and everybody saying that I was crazy. Saying that I'm a mess. I want to live. I want to be able to live life and not give a crap anymore. Everything that we put ourselves through, I just don’t want to do it anymore. I want to say, now that I'm sober and embracing who I am, I feel stronger than ever. I have faith finally. When I've been able to open up and be who I am and others see that, they've given me strength as well.

I deserve to explore my passions, my true self.

I deserve to give myself a break.

Life is not over. LIVE IT!

I was a sex worker, but yet got lost in the money it brought me. The drugs were enticing. The fantasy.

Now I am SET FREE! You can too!

Broward House is an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran or disability status.

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1726 SE 3rd Ave. Ft Lauderdale, FL 33316

Tel (954) 568-7373 ext 7373

Email: info@browardhouse.org