Mario is a fighter who battled his inner demons for 22 years

I was born in Brooklyn in 1980 and raised by 2 beautiful Italian parents. I have an older brother, lots of family here and over seas.  I was raised on Staten Island but was between both them boroughs. My whole life had 2 different up bringings.  My first taste of pain came when I was 5.

I had some trouble with school but excelled in other subjects, sports was big in my life. Then I started hanging in the streets and I learned fast how to cut corners and soon after that everything changed!  Graffiti and breakdancing became a way of life. I lived the fast life... cars, clubs, and girls is all I knew. I traveled a lot and I did a lot of things that I'm not proud.

For 22 years I battled with my own inner demons. I tasted what bitterness and pain can give you. I felt love and I know what heartbreak feels like. I lost family and close friends (whether it was to natural causes or unnatural causes).  Jails and institutions were common and the next stop was death, which I came close to many times, but I keep fighting!

There is a reason why I'm still here. I don't have the answer to why yet, but in time I guess I'll see. Only through the grace of God can I be the man I am today.  Am I still sick at times?  Absolutely. Old habits die hard, but I'm not afraid to share who I am.  I'm a grateful recovering addict and my name is Mario.

"In a nutshell" I'll help break the stigma!  I am not afraid.  I'm blessed and extremely grateful. Recovery saved me! I know now there is a way out, there is a solution.  Live a life of love, believe in faith, hold on to the hope, stay true to yourself, even if no one gets it.  Never give up on yourself! 

Today is a new day and I'm a fighter!  I'll fight for what I want. I'll fight for what I love. I'll fight for what I believe in.  Just for today, I make it count because I know this is my life. I always wanted a life beyond my wildest dreams and if this crazy addict can get it, so can you. We rise, we fall, and we pray for better days. Why we shoot for the stars and prayed for better aim. The world the pain remained, it never changed. Long as the sun will show, the cold is still the same. Just try to make history, we got to make history. Ain't no mystery. Got to make history. I Know my history but got to  make histor.y Can't shake destiny, just gotta make history....