“My life has been affected by addiction. I am currently facing felony drug convictions. I am living without my children. I even get treated differently at the hospitals because I have substance use disorder. My mother has taken on the role of full-time grandma, and cares for my four children. My children are growing up without me right now, and don’t deserve to not have their mother around because of drugs.
However, I am trying to change my life and move in a positive direction. I moved into the YWCA as a self-pay and am attending meetings with the WIND Program, thinking that when I go to court things will work in my favor. I have changed my environment, including who I hang out with, where I spend my time, and what activities I allow myself to be around.
I gain inspiration on my toughest days from my kids and my boyfriend Kyle. One of the things that keeps me going is knowing that once I have stable foundation with my recovery, I will be able to have my kids back. We will be able to be a family again. I think of how far I’ve come and how many people I have to prove wrong. I am going to be someone someday. The kind of thinking allows me to stay positive, no matter what the situation.
One thing that I have learned on my journey to recovery is that not a single soul on this earth is invincible. We all can become victims of the disease of addiction. Substance use disorder is not prejudiced, by any means.
There are a few people I would like to mention, and give praise to for their help with my journey, the ladies in the WIND Program. They are the most admirable people that I have ever had the pleasure of being around. Although they each have their own stories, I have gained strength from listening to them and sharing their journey. The WIND Program pushes me and others to do more, to see things and opportunities that we have closed ourselves to. The hours of listening and support, transportation, food and clothing, and a bed to lay in, a room to call my own.
I put my family through hell the last year, but they never gave up on me. The YW family has worked to help hold me up when I was sad. They have helped restore my hope that there will be a tomorrow. If I could tell them one thing, it would be : thank you for everything that you have done, continue to do, and will do in the future for me or another woman needing help.
I hope my court hearing goes well and that I don’t have to spend much time in prison. I am truly hoping that since I joined the WIND Program I will get some grace. But I will serve my sentence and when released will once again apply to the WIND Program and work to get my children back. I hope they forgive me one day.
If I could enact one law in the United States, it would be to make all substance use treatment centers affordable and available to any individual, regardless of their background or income level. The moment that they say to themselves they are done living a life of insanity, and want to get on a path to recovery they should have access to help. All facilities would offer the same programming, prevention, and therapies. We all deserve the same level of respect, care, and opportunity. We all deserve a second chance at life in recovery.”
– YWCA Wheeling