There are as many roads to recovery as there are people in recovery.
Some hit bottom, stop drinking or using, and never do so again. But many must travel a road with more twists, turns, and valleys to reach a more enduring recovery. Lindsey traveled such a road to get where she is today.
“My childhood was the same as most people’s,” she said about growing up in Lexington as the youngest of 6 children. “I had everything I needed, much of what I wanted, and my parents were successful.”
Like most kids, Lindsey tried alcohol in order to fit in and deal with peer pressure. But her life unraveled with continued alcohol use. Every aspect of her life suffered and she entered her first residential treatment program as a teen. She stayed for a while, but did not complete it.
Afterwards, Lindsey stayed clean for a while, returned to school, and moved to Northern Kentucky. But the “geographic cure” (moving in order to get or remain sober) didn’t last. She began associating with the wrong crowd again. Alcohol, drugs and arrests soon consumed Linsday’s world.
Linsdey eventually entered Transitions’ Women’s Residential Addiction Program (WRAP) to pull her life together. For a while, it did seem she was on the right track. She completed WRAP’s residential and aftercare programs…lived in Transitions’ Oxford House for women…got married and had her second child…bought a house…and relapsed after 3½ years of sobriety.
“I wasn’t working, had too much time on my hands, and my relapse went from zero to 100 so fast,” Lindsey recalled. “My disease had progressed even while I was sober.” Soon, she was back in the system and served 16 ½ months in the Grant County Jail. “I had become someone I didn’t know anymore,” she said of that time.
Lindsey’s turning point occurred on January 2, 2004 when she took someone else’s sleeping pill and had what she calls a “spiritual awakening.” She soon resolved to do whatever it took to get in, and stay in recovery. She was still determined to recover by the time she entered Transitions’ Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) in Covington, which she completed successfully. Slowly but surely, pieces of her life came back together. She obtained her own apartment, had her daughter with her, and was working at McDonald’s where she was eventually became a manager.
During this time, a chance encounter with a Transitions employee resulted in Lindsey getting a 3rd shift job at WRAP. Today, she is the administrative assistant at IOP. “I’ve met some of the most awesome people ever working at Transitions,” said Lindsey. “I’ve met life long friends here.”
Lindsey leads a busy, full life outside of Transitions. In addition to her work at Transitions, she participates in a self-help program for people in recovery and attends school at Northern Kentucky University, with a projected graduation date in 2016. Lindsey and her long-term partner have 5 children between them.
What made the difference the second time around? “The spiritual side,” replied Lindsey. “It was a rude wake-up call. I had to change everything – people, places, things. While I was incarcerated, no one gave up me. My family still supported me. A lot of people from church supported me, too.”
As for Lindsey’s advice to a newcomer at Transitions, “Be open-minded and follow the rules, because they’re there for a reason. Stay sober so you can hear the message.”