“This is what addiction does. It takes everything from us.” In recovery since, 2015, Isabel Landrum is working on getting her life back as she helps others at a detox and treatment center in Southern California.
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Being an addict is -- it’s just, it’s, it’s hard. Like people don't understand. Like, I wasn't born and I didn't grow up thinking, Oh, I’m going to grow up to be an addict --that’d be great!
No, it just -- it ruins lives, you know. It ruined my life. It took everything I loved from me. I didn't have a relationship with my family, with my mother, like I will go months without talking to my mom. And it, it was very hard for her. And it was sad.
I've been hospitalized three different times. I've been in a coma. I remember when I was taken to the hospital by the ambulance, one of the nurses there, I turned around and I looked at this person, and I grabbed this person, and I said, “Please don’t let me die. I have 3 kids and I don’t -- I don't want to die.”
And I remember when I woke up, he was there. And he said, “Oh, you’re still alive, I didn’t let you die. I didn’t let you die.”
I was tired. I was sick of doing drugs. I wanted a way out.
So back in 2015, I had somebody come to me and ask me if I wanted to go to treatment. I wasn't getting any younger. And I said, “I do. I need help. I want to go to treatment.”
So my clean date is October 10th, 2015. And that was it for me. I’ve, I’ve never looked back.
I wanted to have a life. I didn’t want to be in the hospital all the time. I wanted to have a relationship with my children again. Like, I wanted to have my kids in my life.
Now I talk to my mom every night. I have a wonderful relationship with my mom. I’m working on seeing my children again because my kids are the most important thing in my life, and I haven't been able to see them for a while now.
I have to work on myself, and I have to get myself better before I can have that chance again to be in my kid's lives. I am working towards that right now.
I never used around my kids, you know, like when they were there, I never used around my kids. But, like as soon as they would go with their dad, like I would get high just because there's so much pain there to just see my kids go. I’d just get high because it just numbs you, like you can’t feel anything. You just don’t want to feel anything with all the pain, you know.
I have a boy and two girls. And they are fun kids, you know. My girl, my oldest one, she looks just like me. And I look at their pictures and stuff, and I just, I so want to be part of their life again, you know.
I know I have to like take little steps to get there. But I am doing it. I'm doing it now. And if I was still out using and stuff, this would not be happening. I would not be on my way to see them again, you know.
It’s hard, and I know it’s going to take a while, but this is what addiction does. It takes everything from us.
So now, it's my turn to give back to people. I found what I like to do, and that's help others to recover from addiction. It’s such a good feeling when you know that you helped someone not pick up that drug, you know, like just if you can stay here with us, stay just one more day -- it's going to be okay, you know, just…
That’s what God put me on this Earth to do -- be a mom, of course --and help other people recover from addiction.
And my name is Isabel Landrum and this is my story.