THE woman caught shooting up in a public toilet cubicle with her two toddlers beside her says she is doing all she can to turn her life around for the sake of her children.
The Burnside woman, 33, said the media coverage of her desperate drug use had been a wake-up call that showed she had hit rock bottom.
"I just want people to know I'm not an evil person," she told The Daily.
"I've made bad choices, I've hit rock bottom, I can't believe I've lowered myself this far to allow this to happen - it's horrifying to me.
"I know what I've done wasn't the right thing, and I've taken full responsibility and realise I have a problem, and I'm doing everything I can to make myself better so I can be there for my kids, which is number one."
Major Sue McGuigan, of the Maroochydore Salvation Army, suggested an honest attitude and taking the difficult decision to ask for help were often the first step to a changed life.
"It's about going and knocking on doors, and that's often the hardest part," Major McGuigan said.
She said the Salvos was one of many local support agencies that networked together to assist the needy as best they can.
"It's actually a community response, often, in these situations," she said.
"That's all you can do - point people in the right direction and they've got to run with it in the end."
The mother said difficult family circumstances had been an added stress on her life. However, she also said she had strong support from other relatives, particularly her brother and her sister-in-law, a nurse.
The woman faced Maroochydore Magistrates Court last week on various charges, including possession of controlled drugs.
Police had heard her yelling in a Maroochydore shopping centre toilet, where they found her shooting up Oxycontin and water, a mix that produces a high similar to that of marijuana.
She had bought one tablet of the drug, which is a controlled pain-relief opioid, from a friend for $50.
The woman said she had asked friends to care for her children - aged two and 15 months - while she injected herself, but they returned them to her suddenly and left, just as police arrived.
"I had called out to the people to come and get my kids because I hadn't cleaned up," she said. "Next minute, they (police) came barging through the door and here's me with all my stuff out and you can imagine how bad that looked."
Her youngest child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
She said a follow-up story quoting the concerns of her partner's mother was among the final straws. "When I read the headline, it just broke my heart," she said.
The woman has been given Major McGuigan's contact number. She promised she would make that call.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.