Community Success Stories “My friend had a bad reaction to a syringe of heroin and died in the car…”

“I was 16 when I started smoking pot with my friends. It quickly escalated from pot to different drugs. I tried cocaine and didn’t like it, but pain pills and heroin (now there is a drug) were more my speed. Pain pills are easy to get without much trouble, heroin is a little harder (only a little) to get. So my drug of choice was heroin.

The one thing that you don’t believe when you start is that it will change your entire life. You truly become stupid and do things that you would have never believed yourself capable of, and I don’t just mean selling yourself (that’s really the easy part) it’s truly the other situations that you find yourself in that today seem unreal and almost as if it was a different life or a movie.

On one of those stupid days, I agreed to drive to Texas to pick up some heroin and bring it back to my home town in exchange for some of the heroin. Well, I wasn’t going to Texas by myself so I took a friend who I liked to party with. On our way back, my friend had a bad reaction to a syringe of heroin and died in the car. I was caught.

I got arrested but eventually let out till my trial. Four months later I went to federal prison with a six year sentence, I was 24. My life, my good life, was over. Today I own that I messed up. My family is not to blame. My parents did what they could. I was my own person and made my mistakes all by myself but they suffered. Today I know that, then it was all about me and what I wanted.

I spent 3 years, 7 months and 6 days in jail. I joined the EDAP program for addiction and recovery while in prison and learned a lot. While in prison, I lost two friends to drug overdoses and was not able to go to the funerals. After I was released, my favorite cousin, who I partied with all the time, died of an overdose and I wasn’t able to go to his funeral either.

I am in the YWCA WIND Program. The only reason that I got out of prison in three years was because I did what I was supposed to while in jail and then I applied to the YWCA, was interviewed and accepted in the program and now I am working on my recovery. I missed so much. I am trying very hard to do the right thing. I’ve heard that three of my friends went back to jail since I have been in Wheeling. That will not be me. They have a recovery coach who helped me get a job, has taken me to all of my doctor appointments. One of the requirements of the program is to go to 90 AA/NA meetings in 90 days. They offer transitional housing for an additional 18 months after the 6 month program if I want it or need it. I don’t know what I will do when that time comes but I am sure that I will be clean. The support offered in the WIND Program is what has kept me clean. I won’t be one of the girls that go back to jail for using (at least I hope not).I am taking it one day at a time and with the support of the YWCA WIND Program, I think I can make it.”

-YWCA Wheeling