By Olivia Perry | Personal Narrative
I grew up in a small town in a single family home with my mother and brother. My father was absent from my life due to his career has a songwriter and my mother raised us alone. It wasn’t an easy life for her, let alone any of us.
I always felt like my brother was favored and I wasn’t good enough for my father. I never felt good enough for anyone. I began to follow my brother around at a young age and I did what he did. I began to sleep with guys to fill the void of not having a father in my life and it just made all of those feelings of worthlessness go away.
When I turned 16 I got pregnant and my life began to spiral slowly. I wasn’t so much into hard drugs at that point in my life. Most of the drinking was fun but, I had an addiction to pot.
I had to have it when I woke up when I worked before I went to bed. I always needed it. I had gotten pregnant by my high school sweetheart I had been with since I was 13. We had my son and I moved out at the age of 17 years old. My father talked me into getting emancipated so he no longer had to pay child support and so I ended up quitting school because I was legal and could do what I wanted. My relationship became very abusive and he was doing hard drugs behind my back. I began to take Xanax shortly after. ‘A few years later he went to prison and I broke it off with him, all to get into another relationship just like the last one and that is where I found what I call, my best friend. It took all those feelings of worthless away.
It was cheaper than the pills and it was so much easier to access. Heroine!! My life began to just be one bad experience after another and I was losing myself pretty quickly, all while dragging my son along with me.
My father got sick and was diagnosed with cancer and by this time I was already so caught up and with yet another man, it didn’t really even matter. But, I decided to go see my father and when he got admitted to the hospital I went and stayed with him and made an amends for anything I could have done better and the day he passed I was getting dope instead of being there to see him go. From that day forward I was on a suicide mission. So I gave custody to my mother and tried to do what we call a geographic change and move away to get clean but, I just used other drugs instead. I ended up finally coming home because I missed my son and I was pregnant. I didn’t want any more things to tie me down from using. Even though I had promised myself I wouldn’t use when I got home, all to be using as soon as I got off the bus. I just didn’t want any more responsibilities.
I continued to use while pregnant. I was so caught up in the grips of addiction I couldn’t stop and I wasn’t sure I wanted to. I didn’t care about anyone or anything but what you had so I could get dope. I used up until I went into labor and I ended up losing her to children services. That was the best thing that could have ever happened to me.
They told me that I could get my daughter back and how Rehab! I was scared but, I went anyway because I wanted to get her out of the foster home. I went into detox and came out a new person. After waking up no longer sick, I began to have hope and I decided to stick with it. My grandmother got custody of my daughter and I had my son back. I spent 104 days in treatment and I was ordered to family drug court for a year. I made a decision to not use again no matter what and after a year I got my daughter back. I had a car, a job and my own place to live.
That was 2/26/08 and I haven’t turned back since. NA has saved my life. The steps and the people who have embraced me and supported me have kept me clean. But, I choose not to use every day. One day at a time. There is hope! Recovery isn’t easy but, it’s so worth it. I can stand up and say it’s the best decision I have ever made and it works!
Melissa Holmes Goodmon is the founder and CEO of Casa Capri Recovery, a leading California addiction treatment center created just for women—by women. Melissa is a licensed clinician and has stayed on the cutting edge of women’s treatment since 2006. Because of her own beautiful recovery story, she is proud to be among a small group of trailblazers since founding Casa Capri Recovery for Women in 2011, leading the way for other women to join them in this otherwise male-dominated industry. She is considered an advocate for the recovery community in the truest sense, standing up to discrimination and legally fighting for the rights of sober people in recovery to live in peace. To learn more about advocacy or if you’ve experienced discrimination, you can reach her at email@example.com. Check out casacaprirecovery.com for more information on our program, or please give us a call at 844-207-4880.