For Cody his path to Heartland Center for Behavioral Change began when he was 15 years old. Like a lot of teenagers he experimented with marijuana. This led to hallucinogens around age 18 and eventually Heroin and Methamphetamine when he was just 21 years old. With an addiction he couldn’t control Cody found himself in a “never-ending cycle of waking up, trying to find money, selling everything I owned, and buying heroin so I could get high.” At this point Cody had tried to quit once, and was sober for 5 months but he relapsed and his addiction led him right back into a dark and treacherous world we see far too often.
Homeless, unemployed, and without a vehicle, Cody was in desperate need of a change. That’s when he found himself in HCBC’s Medically-Monitored Inpatient Detox.
“I was scared, scared about getting clean.” Cody admits the road to recovery isn’t easy and he was afraid to get started. After a few days in detox Cody was admitted to CSTAR Outpatient treatment and began taking the Vivitrol shot, one of the Medication Treatment Services HCBC has to offer. Throughout his treatment he attended Group counseling and education along with individual counseling and community support services.
“Heartland gave me a new perspective. The program helped me to have an open mind and take a different look at life.”
Cody’s days now consist of working with a local artist group working with the homeless in recovery and housing assistance. But the work for Cody hasn’t stopped. With 11 months of sobriety Cody is faithful about attending meetings 3-4 times per week, meeting with his sponsor, working the steps, and helping others reach their goal of becoming and staying sober.
Cody has started training to be a peer support specialist so he can help others who struggle with addiction, and he hopes to one day be a case manager and substance abuse counselor.
Cody stated that being part of these programs has “Kept me sober, kept me moving forward. I am more confident in myself to take on day to day issues. I am driven, motivated, and just happy.”
We are here to continue to support you Cody
Ashleigh & Nicholas
Ashleigh and Nick’s stories are told together because they are a couple who enrolled at the same time in the Jackson Country Drug Court program. As they have progressed through treatment, they have gained strength to plan their future free of addiction.
Ashleigh’s path to HCBC began when she was 13 years old. At this young age, she began experimenting with cigarettes, alcohol and marijuana. As years went by, she struggled with mental health issues and turned to something stronger to self-medicate her pain. At age 26, Ashleigh was addicted to methamphetamine and heroin which led to crime and losing her three children to state custody.
Nick began his journey to HCBC when he was 14 years old. He used alcohol and marijuana which developed into an addiction to methamphetamine and selling drugs by the age of 17. “I always felt that I didn’t ﬁt in. I thought that if I dealt drugs that everyone would like me.”
Nick also was charged with possession and other crimes which led to homelessness, eating from dumpsters and unemployment. Nick met Ashleigh in the middle of their addiction when she became a regular customer of his drug dealing business.
As crime and addiction ate away at their existence, they decided to take steps to change their lives. Both of them entered into treatment under the careful guidance of counselors at the Jackson County Drug Court. Nick enrolled in the Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT) group and started to see progress. “The class makes you dig through your past and compare where your priorities were, compared to where they are now.”
After months of sobriety, Nick and Ashleigh are now engaged, sharing an apartment and a vehicle, and Nick is employed. Ashleigh has regained custody of her children which gives her purpose for maintaining her sobriety. “I give them hugs and it makes me happy and reminds me why I’m here.”
When asked what she would like someone to know if they are seeking release of an addiction through treatment, Ashleigh states with a smile, “It is possible. Addiction doesn’t have to be forever.”
Ashleigh and Nick’s plans for the future include getting married, earning a job promotion, and buying a home. All of this would not be possible without the care and support they received at HCBC. Their advice is to “Keep going. Live for the moment. Don’t settle. Keep improving and do more.”