When my daughter was 18, I found out she had been smoking heroin for a year. All the signs that she was on drugs were the same as that of a moody teenager. But, the evidence was all around me; I just had no idea what to look for. After finding out, I quickly sent her to treatment. We didn’t have insurance, so it was a state program. I was incredibly grateful for being able to get her in so quickly.
Never in a million years did I think I would drop my perfect daughter off at a drug rehab. It was a 28 day program. I thought she was cured! Then came the relapse, after relapse, after relapse. I was completely naive of how addiction works. Now, with good health insurance. She has finished 4 out of 5 treatment programs. One was even 90 days.
I thought this would be over already. I thought our life would be calm, peaceful & serene. I finally started reaching out, learning & educating myself. My daughter is sick & so am I. I want nothing more than to save her from herself, but I can’t. I have learned I can only love her for who she is, sick or not.
I knew more people felt as helpless as I did. I needed to do more. To educate people on addiction; on the epidemic of heroin that is happening all around us. To learn to hate the disease but love the addict. So, I kept searching for things, but nothing really came up. Then I saw a post from Mary about putting together a 5k for SavingTeens. In all honesty, I didn’t know a thing about the organization or what they did. I just knew I needed to do this to start me on my way. I needed a reason to start the conversation on addiction. On a selfish level I also wanted my daughter see me fight for other people’s lives, maybe then she would start to fight for hers. If I had found SavingTeens when she was still a teen, maybe, just maybe, this would be different for my family. But we still soldier on & hold on to hope.