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Cindy's Story

A new beginning through recovery

After spending most of her life focused on her family and career, Cindy never thought she would lose her family’s trust, her job and her life savings. Three years of using drugs and drinking alcohol almost destroyed everything she’d ever valued in life.

“I had grown up in an upper middle-class family, and had a good career and life,” said Cindy. “I was extremely close with my parents, but drugs placed a wedge in our relationship.”

Cindy, now approaching two years clean and sober, feels like she has a new beginning in recovery, something she never thought could happen.

“I had been living on the streets for almost a year and a half, and had spent my life savings on drugs. I was living in and out of drug houses, in my car and sometimes sleeping on the streets. I had absolutely nothing when I came to treatment.”

It was the desperation of Cindy’s father that brought her to treatment.

“My dad just asked me ‘what are you going to do’ and then he fell to his knees and began to cry. I will always remember that moment because I had never seen him cry.”

Cindy came to Fairbanks with the desire to put her drug-using lifestyle behind her. Now, she is an active volunteer through Fairbanks’ alumni services. She helps greet individuals and families as they take their first step in seeking treatment at Fairbanks.

She helps ease their anxiety by sharing her story. She also volunteers in the gift shop and has moved into a leadership role by coordinating the volunteer staff in the new Fairbanks Recovery Center Coffee Shop.

Cindy describes her life as active and full of opportunities to succeed and assist others. She feels that her future, without drugs and alcohol, has a lot in store for her. She has a new start in her marriage of three years and with her son and two granddaughters.

“During my use, I described myself as living on the dark side of the moon, but now I am on a brighter side. On this side I feel like I am supposed to help others who are struggling. So I keep reaching out to them, which also keeps me sober.”