Gloria says she first tried crystal meth at a party with her friends in Tulare County over 25 years ago. She used Meth daily after that in part to help numb the layers of pain, grief, and trauma of sexual abuse she survived as a child.
A 54-year-old mother of 2, Gloria tells me an overdose and a failed suicide attempt pushed her in the direction of a recovery program that rescued her from over two decades of addiction.
“I saw myself floating over my body and I saw myself ask my boyfriend for help, but he had his headphones on and couldn’t hear me, so I asked God to help me and then I woke up on the couch.”
Gloria found herself at Sutter Hospital battling pneumonia and having to answer tough questions by the staff like, “Did you try and hurt yourself?” When Gloria answered courageously and honestly, “Yes,” the staff at Sutter helped her get to Turning Point Crisis Residential where they guide guests like Gloria into transitional housing and addiction recovery programs. From TPCR, Gloria was accepted into Sister Nora’s house which is where she lives currently.
“I’ve been off meth for five years and I haven’t had a drink in twenty-six years. I’m super clean and I go to NA and AA and I try to keep myself positive every day. I refuse to lose anything anymore, I’ve got to stand up for “Me” because that’s all I have,” she says.
Gloria wears a small, delicate Wonder Woman necklace and when she talks about what that means to her she smiles and says, “Stand up for yourself and be strong. Don’t be afraid to say “No” and always be who you are supposed to be.”