This article originally appeared on LittleThings.com.
Saundra Crockett’s life began with so much hardship. After suffering from child abuse at the hands of her father, Saundra was essentially left to raise herself. By her teens, she was living on the streets and abusing drugs. She thought that if she could find the perfect husband, her life would change for the better. This type of thinking, however, was a recipe for disaster.
On her 28th birthday, Saundra caught her husband cheating on her. The ex-Marine got angry and assaulted her, hitting her so hard it caused an internal infection. At first, doctors weren’t even sure if Saundra would survive. Saundra underwent 26 surgeries and survived, but her face was left disfigured for life.
By this point, Saundra had two young children who were so terrified of her face they would hardly go near her. She gathered the strength to divorce her abusive husband and find a way to deal with the loss of her face. She hid behind a surgical mask for 12 years; it was the only way she could cope.
Saundra had a third child with another partner and finally hit her rock bottom. She lost all three of her kids and her home.
But just when all hope seemed lost, she started to meet people who wanted to help her and not hurt her…