Drug addiction is a complicated and difficult illness to recover from, but with the right support, it is possible. Case in point, 25-year-old Jamee Valet of Sweet Home, Oregon, whose incredible recovery was recently showcased on the Facebook page The Addicts' Diary.
It featured before and after pictures of Valet, which she had captioned: "I am a recovering heroin and meth addict. These pictures are 2 years apart. The better-looking version of me being just a few months ago when I got my GED! Recovery is possible!"
In an interview with the Daily Mail, Valet explained that she took the picture on the left in the hope that it would kickstart her recovery.
"I love popping zits really bad and that was something I did when I was on meth," she said. "I am a picker really bad."
"I had been sitting all night in my car in a parking lot to meet up with someone for drugs. I stayed there afterward and was using the rearview mirror to pick at my face. It was morning time and I realized I'd been sitting there all this time."This is how another heroin addict transformed after just three months in rehab:
Valet's first foray into the world of drugs - smoking pot - happened when she was just 13 years old. This was a coping mechanism she used to escape her "really rough" childhood. She also relied on sex and alcohol for the same purpose.
However, things escalated for Valet at the age of 15 when a boyfriend introduced her to pills including Vicodin, Morphine, Oxycodone, Dilaudid and Percocets.
"He was the person who taught me how to crush them up and snort them," Valet said. "That very quickly took over and opiates became my best friend."
At the age of 17, Valet dropped out of high school, and one night while drunk, she was raped by two men. Shortly after this, she was introduced to heroin and meth.
"I was traumatized and depressed from the rapes, and the first thing I did the day I walked out of the door was met up with some guy," she said.
Valet said she then met a drug dealer who took her back to his home where there were "so many drugs", which he "kept feeding" to her "all night."
"I didn't know limits," she said. "I remember throwing up and doing more and throwing up and doing more. I made a fool of myself."
"He sent me home after four days and it took me two weeks to come down. I felt the effects for days but recouped and went right back out."In the video below, Demi Lovato opens up about her battle with addiction:
Because Valet's addiction required daily use, she was soon stealing to fund her habit and was arrested for the first time at the age of 19 - an event that prompted a suicide attempt in prison.
"Suicide was my escape plane my whole life," Valet said. "When I was in jail for the first time, I didn't have drugs to numb myself and my actions kept catching up to me."
After being in a coma for two days, she vowed to never use again, but she was soon back to her old ways.
"After that, I went straight to a man that I had sex for money with and went straight back to it," Valet stated.
Six arrests later, she was placed on probation and managed to stay clean for nine months. During this time, she met her boyfriend Jake at an inpatient program.
"I did okay in that time but something kept gnawing at me saying 'you're not done,'" she said.
"I got pregnant and miscarried, which caused me to relapse," explained Valet. "I put my boyfriend through hell. I stole from him."
Valet would often leave her boyfriend at home with their two dogs while she went to get her fix.
"That's when we told them we had a problem," she said. "I wound up going cold turkey for 16 days and his mom nursed me back to health before sending me to a 90-day inpatient program."
Since then Valet has managed to stay clean for a year, and she is pictured below accepting her GED in January. Now, she is looking to repair the relationships her addiction damaged.
"Family was such a big loss in my addiction," she said. "I'm fighting to earn their trust back and earn my place back."
Currently a construction worker, Valet hopes to go back to college so that she can study to become an aesthetician.
She also has a message of hope for others struggling with addiction, saying, "My heart breaks for people who are hopeless. I don't want them to feel that way because there is always hope."
"No matter how low how you're feeling or how your life is, it does get better. It is up to you to make it better, you can't be like 'my life sucks' and not do anything to change it."