Today, Bill White shared some of my favorite stories.
As I faced these amazingly resilient women, I asked each of them to tell me about the sparks that had ignited their recovery journey. Each of them talked about the role their outreach worker had played in their lives. The following comments were typical.
I couldn’t get rid of that women. She came and just kept coming back–even tried talking to me through the locked door of a crack house. She wore me down. She followed me into Hell and brought me back.
(Describing the first day she went to treatment–after eight weeks of outreach contacts) It was like a thousand other days. My babies had been taken and I was out there in the life. I’d stopped by my place to pick up some clothes and there was a knock on the door. And here was this crazy lady one more time, looking like she was happy to see me. I looked at her and said, Don’t say a word; Let’s go (for an assessment at the treatment center). She saw something in me that I didn’t see in myself, so I finally just took her word for it and gave this thing (recovery) a try.
And she kept sending me those mushy notes–you know the kind I’m talking about. (Actually, I had no idea what she was talking about.) You know, the kind that say, “Hope you’re having a good day, I’m thinking about you, hope you are doing well” and all that stuff. I treated her pretty bad the first time she came, but she hung in there and wouldn’t give up on me. I can’t imagine where I would be today if she hadn’t kept coming back. She hung in with me through all the ups and downs of treatment and getting my kids back.
See my post, Priviledged Access for video of him sharing some of these stories.
2 thoughts on “An absence of hope”
Outreach was one of the most satisfying roles that I have ever served in social work, great reflection piece.
wow, what an inspiration. If she can do that, I can pick up the phone when I really don’t want to.
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