On a day in early 2015, Tuesday says she made the decision to go into treatment in Portland.
“I was living in Eugene, and it was the black hole for me,” Tuesday says. “I was strung out on methamphetamine, homeless and living under a bridge. I’d broken into a family member’s house and was guilty of breaking and entering. The day before I’d been sexually assaulted. I went to the hospital and they did a rape kit, and a few hours later I was in Portland ready to end my addiction.
“I walked into Project Network in my stinky old clothes and said, ‘I’m here!’ I introduced myself and never looked back.”
She was there for more than five months but had to leave a few weeks short of graduation. Tuesday had worked throughout the years she used drugs and was on unemployment insurance while at Project Network. When that ran out, her probation officer said she had to get a job. This meant she had to leave the program since it is a full-time endeavor.
“Project Network was the best experience I ever had in my entire life,” she says. “I could search into my soul and see that I wanted to be a leader but had instead followed others. That’s how I started meth.”
Since that first day at Project Network, she has continued to move forward with her life in positive ways. She is now more than eight years clean and sober and even worked at Project Network for a couple of years.
“I keep pushing forward and maintaining my sobriety,” Tuesdays says. “I remember what it was like the last time I used, and I hope I always do.”
Tuesday now has a little girl whom she clearly adores.
“She is my pride and joy, she is my rock, and so smart,” Tuesday says. “Having her helps me keep pushing forward, maintaining my sobriety.”
One of her lifelong challenges was living with undiagnosed ADHD, making it difficult to go to school. Looking back over her youth, she realized that was why she’d been disruptive in classes, acting out and trying to be funny. Although she’d recognized it in herself, it was several years before it was medically diagnosed. Getting help in dealing with her ADHD was a huge step forward.
Tuesday is now working with others to give back what she received at Project Network. She is a Qualified Mental Health Associate (QMHA) and clinical manager in an Intensive Case Management program. A month ago, she also gained her CADC (Certified Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor) and is a Certified Recovery mentor and a Traditional Health worker.
She also became a Zumba teacher, since gaining weight has been a lifelong struggle that had a negative effect on both her physical wellness and mental health. Now, she is helping others deal with this and many of the other challenges she’s experienced over her life.
Part of her own recovery includes getting her record expunged, and the public defender’s office hopes to have that taken care of within a few weeks. Once that is completed, she says she is ready to start her life over.
“I’m going to be a trauma mental health specialist, focusing on children who are victims of sexual assault, which I also experienced,” she says. “I’m going to be the voice for those that don’t have one. It’s a blessing to be part of someone’s recovery.”