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[ Personal Narratives ]

There Is Always Hope… From Someone Who’s Gone Through 19 Rehabs

So there I was, in yet again in another rehab center, and it’s not because I worked in the industry. I was there for my own treatment, again. It was the first day and everyone was introducing themselves. Their name, drug of choice, how many times had they been to rehab and why they wanted to get clean now

I hated answering the “how many times” questions, because I was completely embarrassed by my answer. Most people said this was their first or maybe second time around. It was my 19th trip to rehab center, between 4 different inpatient centers. I always felt like that scared the other people in the room “What if i’m like her“… “I guess this doesn’t really work”. I have no idea if anyone had those thoughts or not. Never the less, I became bitter and resentful about answering this simple question. 

Of course being bitter and resentful was part of the reason I kept landing myself into those places. I didn’t have a bad household or parents who mistreated me. I was by all means a spoiled brat. My parents were below poor when I was born but soon my dad got himself a good job. My mother was extremely overprotective.  I guess they thought they had something to make up for because no matter what they bought the newest things, gave me money whenever I wanted, so on and so on. 

Once I was in middle and then high school I rebelled against them. I acted like they were the most horrible people in the world, I can’t count how many times I told them I hated them. It wasn’t just normal teenage angst, I felt no love for them. I didn’t care what they thought, how they felt, I did things with the mind-set of intentionally hurting them, especially my mom. I ran straight into the arms of parties, alcohol, drugs and sex. 

I earned a bad reputation during this time.

 Bitch, slut, whore… everyday. 

It all just made me turn to my friends, turn to the drugs and sex even more. A lot of those years are a blur.. different night, different guy, different drink or drug. Wake up repeat. I had a boyfriend on and off before and between all of this. He was abusive both physically and emotionally. When I finally got away from him I was able to stop drinking, drugging and sleeping around, at least for a brief reprieve. 

I met another guy a few months later who would eventually introduce me to opiates. Another guy would be the first person to shoot me up. It was an instant love affair, and i’m not referring to the guy. I lost all my ability to care about others because of heroin. I couldn’t.

It took everything from me. It made me numb. It put me in situations I never would’ve came up with in my nightmares. There were more than a few times I thought I was going to be killed. There were many more times that I wished I would just die. I sold my time, my body, my things, I stole from anyone, I lied, I threatened to hurt myself or others to get what I NEEDED.  Without it I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t move, I couldn’t LIVE! 

I went to my first inpatient center for my family. I went to the second one because I wanted money… at the time it sounded like a good trade… $40 for 2 months in rehab center. The 3rd through the 18th time… I’m sure there were times I was really serious about changing my life it just never stuck for too long. 

The last time, on that first day having to answer that question I realized why it took me every single one of those times to be serious about why I wanted to be sober, Why I needed to stop using, How it was hurting the people around me, How I would have no future if I didn’t change everything about my life at that moment.  

I am so grateful to have had to answer that question 19 times. I have a story to share and the lesson is No Matter What NEVER Give Up!