My Journey to Recovery as a Veteran
A Navy veteran, she struggled with opioid addiction for 3 years after a traumatic experience. She found healing when she reconnected with her faith and joined in a recovery program. Her family gave her strength to persevere through the challenges of recovery.
TW: this story discusses multiple forms of trauma, including sexual assault and mental health.
How Faith in God Plays a Role in My Recovery
Hey, I am a United States Navy veteran. I never imagined I would be addicted to anything past sugar, but life showed up in a different way for me. I was sexually assaulted in the military. That’s when my troubles began.
I began to hate who I was and needed to find ways to not “feel.” I began using alcohol first then slowly turned to cocaine, crack cocaine, meth, and then opioids. My opiod addiction became hectic because my tolerance kept going up and became very expensive. It got to the point where I needed them from the moment I woke up to the end of the day. I sought help and got treatment which I thought was better until I relapsed on suboxone…they took me off without any help. That was devastating because it was painful. Detox was horrific. I began to cry out to God and told him I didn’t want to be addicted to anything anymore. He heard me.
Joining a Recovery Program
I went through 3 years of addiction after I was taken off suboxone. I finally made a decision, a conscious decision, that I deserved better than what I was allowing in my life. I was smarter. I was more elegant. I was classier. I was HOLIER! Because of God. I joined a recovery program called Narcotics Anonymous which I got to attend fellowships with people just like me. I am clean today. I live a new life. I am in college pursuing a bachelor degree in health sciences. I am also a mother of two amazing children. I encourage anyone to reach out and listen to others who have been through it.
Looking back at my upbringing, no one could tell I knew anything about God or had any morals or values. I didn’t like that. My family never gave up on me, and still to this day are the most supportive people in my life.
The Best Way to Start Recovery
I am a veteran so my choices weren’t too limited compared to others. I had a long range of help available when I made the decision. I went to multiple rehabs and tried many medications. I knew I needed help and I asked for it. Go to any emergency room – it’s a good way to start recovery.
Always Ask for Help
As a person of color, I know that we’re proud and we don’t always want to get help. We want to do it on our own.Seeking help is strong. Addiction is one of the times that we, as strong Black women, could reach out. Click To Tweet
If anyone feels like they are facing an opioid use disorder and needs help, please call SAMHSA’s National Helpline, 1-800-662-HELP (4357), a confidential, free, 24-hour-a-day, 365-day-a-year, information service in English and Spanish.