“There’s no other way but God to get through this. No other way.”
Shelly struggled with addiction since she was 14. Her attempts to stop never lasted, until finally, three and a half years ago, Shelly felt God reach into her life.
All seemed well as Shelly stayed sober and rebuilt her life. But then a year and a half ago, Shelly’s daughter overdosed and passed away.
Shelly was in shock. How could her daughter, an addictions counsellor, die from overdosing?
If a counsellor who works in the field can be impacted, anyone can. “She thought she had it under control,” Shelly says. “She thought she was too smart for it. And there’s the sense of shame — how can she go to her employer, being an addictions counsellor, and say ‘I have a problem, and I need to take a few months off to go to rehab?’”
Since her daughter’s death, Shelly has experienced good days and bad days — joy and simultaneous gut wrenching heartache. “I’ve had to press into God in a way I’ve never had to in my life.”
“I’m so grateful for the life I built prior to her dying, where I got sober. Because if I was at all using during that time, I would be dead myself. God is good and I have a lot to live for. I thank Him for my life, thank Him through the tears.”
If you’re struggling with addiction, Shelly wants you to know that people care about you. “So many families are hurting because of overdose. People are going to hurt if you aren’t there. Somebody loves you.”
Shelly is a volunteer at Connecting Streams with the Addiction Recovery ministry.