Pubdate: Thu, 08 Dec 2005
Source: Phoenix New Times (AZ)
Copyright: 2005 New Times, Inc.
Author: Cindy Hoffman


How to deal: My hat goes off to Maggie Voss and her accomplishments.
What she's done for herself and her family is no easy feat ("Ice, Ice,
Baby," Robert Nelson and Joe Watson, November 24.
I know this because my story is very much like hers: hard-core biker
chick and strung-out dope fiend for well over 20 years.

I'm two and a half years clean, and with the help of my Higher Power,
I will stay this way the rest of my life.

I wonder, though, do you know about Women in New Recovery? You
mentioned the Center for Hope as a long-term rehab center for mothers
with children. But Women in New Recovery is a seven-month, inpatient
treatment facility that also includes WINRs & Kids. WINRs is a
nine-month inpatient facility for mothers with their children, and it
was there that I found my recovery and my true spirituality.

Both of the programs feature a peer-driven community, which basically
boils down to one addict helping another.

I had state Child Protective Services in my life for the third time
and was told in no uncertain terms that this was my last chance. I
started out in the WINRs primary program, where I built the
foundations for my recovery, and then went into WINRs & Kids.

Unlike most inpatient treatment facilities, residents there are
required to maintain steady employment, which actually taught me how
to be a mom in recovery and how to deal with supporting my family, as
well. Yet it was all done with the loving guidance of other women in

Even the majority of the staff at WINRs actually graduated from the
program. Being in treatment with my children made a huge difference in
how we interact as a family now. They understand that without me,
there's no us. And that no matter what, my staying clean is the top
priority. As long as I do, I'm free to be the mom they always wanted
me to be.

My children were entirely too involved in my life of drugs, and they
really seem to enjoy being involved in my life of recovery. I
graduated the program in May 2005, but I'm still very closely
connected with my "family" there; I do all I can to help the women
just coming into the program.

Thank you, New Times, for printing a story of recovery and hope. I
cried when I read Maggie Voss' story because stuff like that shows me
that I can do it, too. The world needs to know that there really is a
solution and that places like Harbor Lights, Center for Hope, and
Women in New Recovery are a huge step in the right direction.

Cindy Hoffman, Mesa 
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