Hope for the Holidays

Annette2Annette entered her nephew’s home in southern Indiana last Christmas Eve — thin, sick and addicted to drugs. This holiday, she will arrive a new, better woman — healthy, clean, sober and hopeful for great things to come for herself and her family.

More than a decade ago, Annette found herself at the end of her rope as a newly divorced mother and grandmother. She was still grieving the loss of her oldest son, who died unexpectedly from complications of spina bifida in 2001. With no friends, family was Annette’s world, and her world was falling apart. A newfound friend introduced her to prescription drugs, meth and later heroin. They traveled the difficult road of addiction together for more than 10 years before his road led him to prison. Annette’s road led her right where she needed to be — at Fairbanks.

Annette tried to turn her life around once before. In 2012, she completed Fairbanks’ inpatient detox program at the request of her family. Eight months later, she was addicted again, losing ties with most of her relatives.

“My family pretty much turned their backs on me and they had every reason to,” Annette said.

Since April, Annette has completed inpatient, partial hospitalization (PHP), intensive outpatient (IOP) and recovery management programs. She is now a resident of the Supportive Living Program (SLP) and volunteers two days a week at the Fairbanks Fresh Start Café.

“This time, I really wanted it and I’ve done everything to make it work,” Annette said. “I didn’t like who I was when I was sick. So, I’m staying in SLP until I am strong enough and ready to go home. Fairbanks is helping me learn to live again.”

While Annette enjoys occasional visits back home, nothing will compare to this Christmas, her first family holiday sober in 12 years.

“My family is giving me a second chance,” she said. “I am ready to enjoy this Christmas with them and make things right again. I’ve missed so much, and it’s been a long time coming.”

Learn more about how you can support your loved ones in recovery during the holidays or maintain your sobriety during the holidays on our blog!