It’s time to celebrate! Kelley Lovelace has completed her supervision education and certification, which means she’s now legally able to supervise clinical staff! Not only that, but CEO Ken Wilson also offered her the position of Clinical Supervisor in Bremerton, and she accepted.
“Over the past 3 1/2 years,” Ken said, “I have watched Kelley grow into her role as a clinician. She has embraced who she is in this field and at West Sound, and it shows in her confidence. I am proud of who Kelley has become and is becoming and her dedication to her clients. She was the obvious choice for clinical supervisor.”
Kelley graduated with her degree in chemical dependency in 2016, and she has worked for WSTC since early 2017. “I don’t know what else I would do if I didn’t work in the recovery field,” she said. “Without hearing my story, you’d never understand what I’ve endured to make it to where I am today.”
Addiction & the Way Out
“I was in active addiction since I was 13. Addiction is the only disease that convinces you that you don’t have a disease. It’s cunning, baffling, and powerful. I started doing methamphetamine and opiates and continued using until I was 22.”
Then in February 2012, Kelley’s house was raided, and she went to jail. Facing five felony charges and 10 years in prison, she didn’t qualify for the Drug Offender Sentencing Alternative or other programs that would lower her sentence if she completed treatment. She requested to enter the Drug Court program and was denied.
In April 2012, she wrote a letter to the judge and asked for Drug Court again. “I had been to 11 rehabs before that day, and it was the first time I finally said, ‘I don’t have a home, and I haven’t had one since I was a child. I’m dying and I need you to help me.’ And they did. On April 6, 2012, I was accepted into Drug Court, and I graduated from the program in January of 2014.”
Recovery: Then & Now
Kelley believes that the twelve steps are about spirituality rather than sobriety. They’re about growing along spiritual lines, and sobriety is a by-product of that. “Living by spiritual principles is not something that other 22-year-olds were doing,” she said of those early years. “The recovery community was different then, too. There weren’t as many young people in recovery as there are today. I had to start my life from scratch. Everything that I believed in, everything that I was about, and my perception on life had to change. My recovery has been a journey, and as a woman, part of my journey is about finding my voice and figuring out who I am.”
“After nearly a decade of living in recovery, I can tell you that long-term sobriety is not for the faint of heart.” A lot has happened during the past nine-and-a-half years of the journey. At three years of sobriety, Kelley buried her best friend in the world. It broke her heart and healed her in innumerable ways at the same time. “I sought spirituality and a connection with my higher power with a desperation that I never had before.”
These days, Kelley finds that the challenge is not to fight urges to use drugs, but to stay passionate about recovery and excited about spirituality. “Long-term sobriety is about constantly seeking – seeking to grow, seeking to help others, and seeking what my truth is and living it. It’s about self-reflection, remaining teachable, staying humble, and not compromising my morals regardless of the worldly consequences.”
“My sponsor told me a story once. She was getting her hair cut and this little girl next to her looked at herself in the mirror and said, ‘Oh my God! Look how cute I am!’ And I just thought to myself, that’s how I feel every single day. I’m finally comfortable in my own skin. I know and accept exactly who I am – flaws and all.”