I came to The Extension April 18, 2016, completely broken, hating myself and ready for something different. Having just served close to 9 months in jail, I was humble and willing to do anything to never have to go back! I had lived a “normal life” before my active addiction, owned a home, was married with 2 kids, had a well-paying job, had 2 cars, had a house full of belongings; however, I slowly began to lose it all. I knew I had to figure out why I was so miserable that I felt I had to use drugs, or I would never regain any of the things I had lost. I was ready to learn new tools to cope with life on life’s terms and to deal with the wreckage of my past.

I arrived at The Extension a three time felon, with a pending charge for possession of heroin, my driver’s license was suspended for three years and a divorce pending. I had not seen my kids in a year, was homeless and had lost most of my possessions. Talk about a seemingly hopeless state of mind! Since being at The Extension, I got a sponsor, started working the steps, prayed, listened to my counselor in my weekly sessions, and attended 12 step meetings and life skill classes. Slowly things began to make sense. I started understanding what had been wrong with me my whole life! I worked hard, read several books to understand my addiction, developed a relationship with my Higher Power and got to know my inner child. I’ve worked on making amends, rebuilding my relationship with my children and my parents, finding and maintaining full-time employment and building a network of sober friends. Something was still missing though. A huge obstacle I had to overcome was facing my fear of being my authentic self. Once I began learning who I really am, the good, bad and ugly, things really began to fall into place. I worked on healing my relationship with myself and forgave myself for my past mistakes. I stopped living in shame for the choices I made in active addiction. I worked really hard at practicing acceptance and faith. I kept doing the next right thing and the next right thing started happening for me.

I transition on March 26th, 2017 and am a totally different person with a completely different life. I have learned to love myself, something I never thought possible and am not afraid to be my true self. I have an amazing relationship with my children and my parents. In July 2016, a law was passed that allowed me to get my driver’s license back. I was recently hired at a much higher paying job, and am moving to a townhouse I was able to rent, despite my felony record. I have overcome so many obstacles because of the things I have learned at The Extension. This place not only saved my life, it gave me the ability to live a fulfilling life, full of love and serenity.

Lorraine, 2/24/17