F1330237-AE06-40E2-9C65-6F0A166CB54BOn the 8th day of Christmas….


FREEDOM, that is something I have wanted since I was a little girl living in Toronto. I can remember laying in my bed and telling myself “I want to be free”. What did I want to be free from…looking back it was chaos, abuse, abandonment,death while living in the throngs of addiction on a daily basis. As the years went by, in my reality of adult life I created the same environment, it was a living nightmare for myself and those around me, I would pray for the same thing “I want to be free”.

I finally found that “FREEDOM”, 32 years ago when I surrendered and found recovery. Since that day my life changed dramatically. I was able to take a long, hard look at myself and took the risks to make changes. I went to treatment in the United States when I was 3 years clean and it was a life changing experience, I have never looked back. When I was two years clean, I went to college to obtain my addiction counselling diploma and started working at a treatment centre in Ontario. It was a rude awakening, my buttons were pushed to the limit, I asked myself “How can I help others if I have not helped myself first”, I knew I had to go to treatment and seek counselling. I believe and know today I had to be “free” of my demons to be effective. After treatment I worked with women and it was heart warming to be on their journey to help them find “FREEDOM”.

This FREEDOM allowed me to be a free spirit and take risks, I hopped in my car with only my clothes and drove across Canada to BC. I worked as an addiction counsellor here, felt joy watching others find their freedom for many years,

The FREEDOM I talk about is not just freedom from using alcohol & drugs…it is freedom to give yourself permission to live life on life’s terms, experience pain and know you have freedom to get through it, experience joy & happiness and know you have the freedom to embrace knowing you deserve it.

Today I can say, this FREEDOM has allowed me be to be a supportive Mom, grandmother, and friend. It has allowed me to understand and accept what powerlessness truly means, I thank god for that in my life today. I no longer say “I want to be free”, what I say today is “I am free” with joy in my heart.

I am retired today, yes a senior citizen, did I ever think 32 years ago I would get to this place, not a chance, I was trapped but low and behold, here I am today free as a bird to do whatever I want!!

#12daysoffreedom #Addictivedesigns #interventionsondemand #Recovery #UGMVancouver #Thesanctuaryprogram #andstillwerise #LindaLane #HeidiSmith #Freedom




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