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'There is hope' | Lenoir City family spends first Mother's Day together after 17 year battle with addiction

Two of Teresa King's children struggled with nearly two decades. This year, they're both in recovery and celebrating Mother's Day with her.

LENOIR CITY, Tenn. — For Teresa King, Mother's Day hasn't always been a reason to celebrate.

"It was lots of heartache," King told 10News. "[My husband and I] would see our mothers, love on them, take them their gifts and get us home as quick as we could."

Two of her children, Tessa and Dustin, had struggled with addiction. Sometimes, she'd be lucky enough to get a card.

Other times, she'd be sitting at church events by herself.

"The beast of addiction is something that will steal your kids very quickly," Teresa King said. "It wasn’t about gifts or any of those things. I simply wanted my children back."

A few years ago, that began to change when her daughter Tessa decided to find recovery through her faith. Now, Tessa is three years clean and running the Beauty 4 Ashes recovery program in Loudon County.

"Recovery for me has saved my life," Tessa King said. "I'm so grateful to have my mother, my father, my brother, my sister and my kids back in my life."

Credit: Courtesy of Teresa King

This year, however, Mother's Day was even more special. Teresa's son Dustin has been living with them for more than a month as he begins his journey to recovery.

"It's the best Mother's Day Gift," Teresa King said. "There's not a better gift to see your kids walking whole again and healthy and being productive citizens of society, serving the Lord."

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Credit: Submitted

Dustin King said he was grateful to be able to spend the day with his mother.

"It's one of the first Mother's Days I've been able to spend with my mother and the rest of my family in many, many years as a sober child," Dustin said. "It's been very rewarding to see the smile on her face."

Recovery hasn't been easy for Dustin or Tessa, but they're grateful for their faith and the lessons they've learned.

"It is so much better on the other side if you can just get through it, find yourself some hope, find yourself the reason," Dustin said.

"I'm so grateful to feel like a whole instead of feeling like it's empty or it's cracked all the time," Tessa said. 

Their parents couldn't agree more.

"You have to endure, you have to pray, you have got to speak life," Teresa King said. "Addiction does not have to be the end."

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