Cherie's Story

At 27, Cherie was diagnosed with breast cancer.  After two surgeries, chemo and radiation, the young mother was cancer-gree.  However, she was about to undergo another battle that would take much longer to overcome.

"I had some lingering pain, so I was using prescription pain killers," Cherie recalls.  Sadly, by the time Cherie's prescription ran out, she was deeply addicted.  Desperate, she took to buying street drugs, including fentanyl.  Eventually, she says, "It all spiraled out of control, right in front of my eyes."

Last year, Cherie was incarcerated and lost everything--her job, her car, her home.  Fortunately, her parents were able to take temporary custody of her son.  When she got out of jail, she had nothing left but her clothes--and a desire to stay sober for good.  

"I'd heard about Hope Gospel Mission after I got out of jail, and I looked it up.  I liked that there was a long-term program," Cherie says.  "Addiction is different for everybody, so they work with each person and fit the education to meet their needs."

But the Mission gave Cherie much more than education.  It gave her a new outlook on herself.  "I feel worthy again!  I used to keep everything inside, but now I can tell people how I feel.  Hope Gospel pulled me out of my shell."

Not long after coming to Hope Gospel, Cherie spoke to her mother and will never forget what she said.  "She told me, 'You sound happy.  You sound like the old Cherie again.'  It was something I hadn't heard in a long time, and it made me feel good.  It was a big motivation."

Now, ten years after beating cancer, Cherie is still strong, still a survivor.  She looks forward to graduation and to the life she will enjoy with her son, now 15 and in high school.

"Hope Gospel Mission pretty much saved my life." Cherie says.  "I'm coming up on a year sober, and I never thought that would be possible.  I'm very thankful!"

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