I was invited by Debra Vizzi, the head of VIP Community Services, to attend their Friday Morning Breakfast Club, a weekly support/inspirational meeting for addicts in recovery. Tatiana, 24, from the Bronx and now in the women's residence, was one of many to stand up and share; she recited a poem she had written.
Tatiana started using drugs in '06, initially weed, mushrooms, and ecstasy, but she quickly moved to heroin. The drug abuse led to her selling herself, and constant thoughts of suicide. Twice before, she has been through detox and rehab, and has now been clean for 99 days. "This time I'm getting clean for me, not for my family. That's a big difference." When she leaves the program she is hoping to get the last four credits to complete college and go into nursing.
When I asked her how she wanted to be described she said, "I am an eccentric piece of work. Addicts are sensitive people who often don't know how to deal with their emotions."
Please take the time to read her poem here, Strolling craigs list avenue for drugs. Tatiana's picture is the first in a companion series that I hope to shoot over next few months called Faces of Recovery.