“I just put the drug down and didn’t wanna pick it up and I said, ‘this is it’, and that actually was it.”
Kimberly McCoy first tried crack-cocaine when she was a teenager. She said she wanted to be freed from responsibility, worry, and pain.
“I thought by doing bad things it meant that I didn’t care about anything and I didn’t have to feel the way that I felt because from early on I felt like I did not get enough love. No matter what people tried to do for me I just did not feel loved.”
At the same time, she entered into what would become a 26-year long abusive relationship- with another addict.
“All day every day I was told that I wasn’t good enough for one reason or another, that I’d never be good enough. Some of the addiction behaviors were thrown in my face and judged and I was told how I felt on a daily basis and when I was asked why I did something I would answer honestly, as honestly as I could, and I was always told, ‘that’s not why’.”
The couple had four children.
“I tried to be a parent and I tried to be a drug addict and everything that goes with both of those and they just clashed like crazy.”
McCoy tried to get clean for years– but wasn’t ready to fully commit to treatment.
Clinical director of the YWCA’s Steppingstone Supportive Living Program, Amy Wells, said she sees this all the time.
“I say to people, ‘no, when you’re ready to surrender, any program will work for you but you’ve gotta be ready to surrender to this addiction and work the program,'” said Wells.
McCoy is enrolled in the Steppingstone program. The program is for women age 18 and up who are recovering from addiction. While women do live there, Wells said it’s more than just a residential program, it’s also a licensed treatment program. It’s also the only program in the Rochester area that’s all women and children based, meaning women can have their children live there with them. It has 29 units and up to 46 kids can be living there at one time.
Wells said women must be sober for 30 days before starting the program and they must be getting additional treatment in the community during their stay. McCoy entered the program fully committed.
“The best thing about this program is the people. The relationships. It’s a chance to practice my new skills. It’s a chance to not only love others but to be loved by others,” she said.
Now McCoy is more than 10 months sober. She’s left the toxic relationship and she’s working on making amends with her children.
“They do nothing but love me. They do nothing but love me and all four of those kids love me and I know that each and every day, I know that.”
She also said she has a new granddaughter. The best part about that for her?
“She never has to see me getting high, like ever. She never has to see me like that and that’s a blessing.”
Putting down the drugs and calling the shots in her own life is what Kimberly McCoy chose to do.
“There is nobody too broken to recover from anything,” she said.
And she’s proud to say- she’s breaking the cycle.