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Handling a pandemic, mental health and substance abuse recovery

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– This pandemic has impacted everyone in some way, but for recovering substance abuse addicts, these times can be extra tough.

Trina Day, has been sober for two and a half years, and is now a peer recovery coach at Mid-Michigan Recovery Services.

“I’ve lost two friends to overdose deaths since the pandemic started,” said Trina.

She says she started partying with drugs and alcohol when she was only 14 years old. Then at 19, she had a son.

“It was really rough so it was my escape from the responsibilities that were put on me a little too early,” said Trina.

Then at 27…”I met a gentleman that was a heroin addict and I had no clue,” said Trina. “I begged to do the heroin, and he told me, it’s going to take your soul, you don’t want to do this.”

It wasn’t long before Trina’s life turned upside down.

“Within 3 months of intravenously using heroin, I lost everything.”

After going through 54B Drug Court, help from the Mid-Michigan Recovery Services and Rise Recovery Center, Trina decided she wanted to change.

“I was just tired of that life.”

Trina set a goal to be a peer recovery coach.

“I knew it would be something that would help keep me sober beyond probation and beyond losing that accountability,” Trina said.

Trina has been helping people with their recoveries, but during a pandemic, it can be hard to stay focused on recovering.

“The biggest challenge is being idle, sitting there and not being able to do anything, not go out, not being around face to face the people that have been around supporting you like in AA meetings, NA meetings, but then you can find that different avenue, go to zoom meetings,” said Trina.

She says it’s important for people in the recovering community to also focus on their mental health, especially in times like these.

“Recovery does get easier, but it’s still hard, you still fight everyday,” said Trina.

Trina says it’s important to reach out to your friends, family and other people who have supported you through your recovery.

“Rely on the support people and take their advice and actually put it to action, and that’s what I did with my life, it’s every day I love waking up, I love my job and that I’m helping people,” said Trina.

Other members of the community are also trying to help those who are recovering from substance abuse during this pandemic.

Jamie White, an attorney with White Law PLLC, donated$5,000 to the Ingham County Treatment Courts Foundation.

The foundation provides assistance to help those recovering. From helping pay for a spare tire, to diapers or whatever someone may need to continue on their path to recovery, meet court dates, etc.

White says the decision to donate was an easy one.

“Their support groups are taken away and then when you couple that with the fact that we have an economic crisis, you know it just makes them incredibly vulnerable, and so the hope is that they won’t be forgotten, and that as a community we can gather our resources and protect those individuals,” said White.

White also hopes that his donation will encourage others to follow his lead and help those in the recovery community.

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