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They Said There Was No Hope For Me. They Were Wrong!

by Cindy D
(Casper, WY)

I started smoking pot in high school, pretty harmless, right? For many people it is, but I am not one of those people. I am one of those people that you hear about, the ones hell bent on self destruction.

In a very short time pot was just for fun, my everyday drug was crank (before it was meth). By time I was 19 I was already pretty strung out, by time I was 22 I was shooting up. By time I was 30 I had to switch to smoking it because I had no veins left.

I was arrested constantly, on probation, on the streets, wandering from one bad situation to another. My children had been taken from me, and I used that as an excuse to continue on with my self destruction.

Probation officers started sending me to different counselors, but there was no way I was going to listen to someone who learned about addiction from a book. I had more kids, put them through hell with my inability to clean up. I had quit having fun years before but I was stuck.

I couldn't stop because it really was the only life I knew. Then I got busted again (6th time) and this time was it, I went to prison. Best thing that ever happened to me. CPS took my kids again and I knew that I was tired. I couldn't handle this life anymore and I could not handle the loss of my kids again.

I agreed to parole to a "treatment center" but I had no clue what I was getting myself into. My parole officer sent me to a place in Mesa AZ called Women in New Recovery. I had been to treatment before and thought that I could say the right things and buffalo the counselors and skate through. I was wrong.

What I walked into was a seven month in patient facility run completely by women in recovery. Every single person that I had to answer to had been where I had and knew exactly what kind of bullshit I was going to pull. It was the toughest program I had ever been to.

Women were required to work a job and work an active program of recovery, and help out around the property. There was no faking it there. The few times I tried, I was called on it immediately.

Pretty soon I found myself looking at my peers, the women who were graduating, how strong and self confident they were, and I wanted what they had. So I did what they did. I worked an honest to goodness 12-step program of recovery, I committed myself to sisters in recovery and soon I was one of them. One of the women that new comers looked up to.

I got my kids back, and my life became a living amends to them. It still is, because I still see in them the side effects of what I have put them through. After a while I went back to work for Women in New Recovery as the Assistant program manager. It exhausted me.

I came home everyday just beat. But every morning I was up ahead of time ready to do it again. Sharing my experience strength and hope with others made my life complete. I have since moved away from AZ and now work a regular job, but I am living proof that peer to peer recovery works.

There was no hope for me, even CPS said, "the chances of you seeing your kids again is slim to none" yet when they returned custody to me they were happy to do so. If you are a woman struggling with addiction or alcoholism, google Women in New Recovery, it is the best program ever.

If that is not your answer then I urge you to seek out a 12 step meeting. When you get there find the person you most want to be like and then latch onto them for dear life. There is hope, there is help, and it comes from the people who have been down your road. I promise.

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Jul 12, 2012
to anonymous
by: Cindy

Yes it can be done, it does take commitment, but most of all it takes faith in a higher power, forgiveness, to yourself and others, gratitude for every little thing you have in life. Also you cannot do it alone. You must have a support group, of peers in recovery, people you cannot fool. They will love you and accept you for who you are, and help you find the you that you are looking for.

Jul 12, 2012
by: Anonymous

You have given me hope. Thank you so much. I needed to read your story to show me it can be done. I've been in a really bad place but know that I can also change with commitment and effort. God Bless you

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