~ (POTJS Note: This is part three of a four-part series I am doing this week on Mary’s Place by the Sea, Ocean Grove, a respite home for women who are being treated for cancer. Since 2009, when they first opened their doors, almost 8,000 women with cancer have been guests. Thanks to ongoing donations, there is no cost to the guests who stay. The stories this week are based on interviews conducted over the past weekend.)
“I know Mary’s Place by the Sea will always play a significant role in my life. An incredibly important part of my life is to help others. Growing up I felt an emptiness inside of me, and I filled it up with the wrong things, and I became an alcoholic at a very young age. I had many people who helped me get on the right track, and I am now sober for 27 years. Getting sober was the turning point in my life to become who I was meant to be, which is to help others. I know I need to give it away in order to keep what I have. I have filled that hole I used to feel while growing up by helping other people here at Mary’s Place.
“I am so grateful for the people I work with, and all of the friendships I have made over the years here. It is such a unique place. People really can feel it as soon as come in. When people walk through those front doors, they can feel the love that this place carries for everyone. It fills my soul to be here and a part of it all. Whatever my future holds, my heart will always be at Mary’s Place by the Sea.”
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