June 2023

My name is Margaret and I am a woman in long term recovery! 

I grew up in a large family, but always felt like I was alone. Never feeling like I fit in anywhere I began to mimic others to be accepted. This included the use of substances, anything to combat the extreme feeling of loneliness. If the substance did not help me fit in then I would leave, always searching for my place in life. 

Living most of my life in the Ozarks of Missouri there weren’t many places to run. I continued to run but the loneliness always followed. I gave birth to two amazing daughters and then my addiction began to manifest deeper in my life. I did not want my daughters to grow up in that life so in desperation I chose to do what I felt was best for them and gave up custody. This is when my whole world felt as though it had crumbled. My addiction really took off from there.

I tried filling my life with substances, relationships, and running, but nothing would fill the void I felt in my life.

It wasn’t until I was my oldest daughter cut me out of her life completely that I knew I had finally hit my bottom.  That was when my youngest daughter first introduced the idea of going into recovery. It took some talking for her to convince me but finally I agreed to come to Florida.

March 15, 2021 I flew to Florida to be with my daughter for her birthday, and there is when my life began to change. I was Baker Acted and lost contact with my daughter (the only person I knew in Fort Lauderdale), found myself at the central terminal, lost and alone. I had every intention of stepping out in front of a bus the next morning. My Higher Power had other plans for me. Fortunately, an amazing woman convinced me to go home with her. She took me into her home, fed me, allowed me to shower, and sleep on her couch. The next day she took me back to the central terminal, where there were people walking around asking if anyone needed help. She told them I did.

After sharing my story with them they were able to get me to Broward Hospital where I was able to get an appointment for BARC Detox. While at detox I was accepted to BARC IRT. Although I was resistant at first, I finally began to gain some clarity. I completed the program in 54 days and was then accepted to Fellowship RCO’s Recovery Residence for Women. I did not plan on staying there long, but as time went by and I truly began to work on myself it became my home.

As I built momentum in my recovery, I was also progressing in life. I started a new career path helping others start their recovery journey. I started working as a part time house manager for the women’s residence before I accepted a full time job as a tech at Fellowship RCO’s Respite.

At the same time I invested more in my recovery by connecting with a new sponsor, who is amazing, and began to thoroughly work the steps with integrity, honesty, and humility.

Over the past few years there have been so many amazing opportunities presented to me, and as long as I keep working my recovery I know there is more to come.

I am now in the process of obtaining my GED, and working toward becoming a Certified Recovery Peer Specialist.

I was able to go on vacation this year, and make a much needed amends to my oldest daughter, and spend time with her and my grandbabies for the first time in over 2 and a half years.

Most importantly I no longer feel alone. I have the family, friends and support far beyond what I could have imagined for myself.