Looking at gorgeous and vivacious 20-year-old Jess now, it's almost impossible to believe that two years ago she was in the grip of an all-consuming addiction to the deadly drug ice.
Yet Jess’ daily habit came perilously close to claiming not only her relationship with her distraught mother Linda, but the then-teenager’s life.
Jess’ $1500-a-week addiction saw the once straight-A student drop out of high school to live in squalor with her older boyfriend, become severely malnourished and be hospitalised as her organs started to fail.
Though she describes an idyllic childhood on the Gold Coast, in 2008 Jess’ parents’ marriage collapsed, and she and her mother moved to Melbourne. It was Jess’ first year in high school and suddenly it seemed her fairytale world was no more.
"I was at a stage where I wanted to rebel against everything. I started smoking dope in the park. I quickly realised that doing drugs was a really easy way to forget about everything,"" she recalls.
At 16, with her older boyfriend by her side, Jess found herself sitting on the floor in a junkie house and accepting the offer to smoke crystal meth from a pipe. Addiction to ice was almost instantaneous.
Before long, though, Jess’ drug habit had taken hold of her life. Dropping out of school, the teen turned to crime to support her addiction, stealing and forging Centrelink payments.
As Jess’ world spiralled out of control, her skin turned sallow, her teeth began to decay and her weight dropped from a healthy 55kg to a terrifying 30kg. Nothing, it seemed, could save her.
However the turning point for Jess finally came during a stint in hospital, "The doctors told me my organs were failing and that, if I kept using, I wasn't going to live much longer," recalls Jess.