Inspired by Natalie’s Story

Two years ago, I was interviewed by Huseyin Djemil for the Towards Recovery Journeys Podcast. Towards Recovery is a recovery community in Henley-on-Thames that Huseyin founded back in 2012. I edited this interview into 12 film clips and last week I posted them into the Recovery Voices section of this website. Here is one of the edited films which relates to Natalie, the young lady I first met back in 2000 and who inspired me to start writing stories about recovery.

David describes meeting ‘Natalie’, a former heroin addict, in his early days of working in the field. He reads a section of her Story that is posted on the his Recovery Stories website.

‘There were about fifteen people in my first group session, one of whom was an ex-heroin user who had been clean for about 16 years. She came over to talk to me and I was in awe. She had done exactly what I was doing and she had gotten through it. From that moment on, I didn’t feel so alone. She had done exactly what I was doing and she had gotten through it. It was a Light Bulb Moment.’

Natalie also explained that when she was using heroin she didn’t ever meet anyone who had given up using the drug. She couldn’t find any information on the internet about stopping using heroin. ‘I had to carry on doing what I was doing.’ Natalie told David that if he wanted to help people with serious substance use problems, he should tell stories of addiction and recovery. He asked her if he could tell her story and she agreed. Natalie is now over 20 years in recovery. David has written later versions of Natalie’s Story, the last of which reveals Natalie’s traumatic experiences prior to her starting to use heroin.