In Atlanta next week, leaders from across the nation will ascend on Atlanta for Operation UNITE’s 2023 Rx and Illicit Drug Summit. Each year they name Hope Ambassadors, which highlights stories of people in recovery, and those who have impacted the recovery journey of others.
This is Aisian’s story …
"Addiction does not discriminate, it can happen to anyone. But the greatest thing about that is that recovery does not discriminate either."
The year was 2014 and Aisian Lucas sat in silence as a judge contemplated how long she will spend behind bars. What that judge didn’t know was that his decision would transform lives, provide hope, and give Aisian the path to a new life. He allowed her one more chance at treatment.
For roughly nine and a half years Aisian Lucas had battled addiction, treatment never seemed to work. However, this time she would walk into Beth’s Blessings, an Addiction Recovery Care facility in Jackson County and there she found a new lease on life.
“For the first time, I remember seeing how blue the sky was, how green the trees were, and just beauty,” said Lucas who serves as ARC’s Manager of Outreach Relations. “I made a commitment to God and myself that I would do whatever it took to stay sober and live life.”
Following treatment, Aisian returned home and rooted herself with her church family. They began a journey for a ministry called Re-Wired, and there they help people seek treatment and build connections for sobriety.
“Through these last eight years, it’s hard to put on paper the beautiful journey I have been on, however, it only continues to get better,” added Lucas.
What does being named a Hope Ambassador mean to you?
“Its a true honor. It means that I get the opportunity to continue to spread HOPE, that people can see that recovery is possible and great things lie ahead! It’s important for people to understand that no matter where you came from, what you have done, it doesn’t mean that you can achieve greatness and do big things with your life!”
How have you used your story to inspire others?
“Everyday I want to share the struggles that I went through, to show people how God and recovery can change things drastically. I share my desperation from addiction, but then show that God changed my life, recovery made it all possible, and helping others gives me the courage and the passion to press forward.”
When you think about the word HOPE, what does it mean to you?
“Hope means possibilities. Even though, at certain times, we can’t see it, it’s there. Hope means endless possibilities at best. Just because you were homeless, and addicted, doesn’t mean that in a few years you can’t have a home of your own, your kids back, and be a respectable person. Hope means that if you can dream it, it can happen.”
What would you tell someone battling a substance use disorder who is considering treatment?
“I would say that it’s one of the scariest things that I have ever had to do. It will be scary for you as well, but it will be so worth it. When you finally get to a place where getting high is work,and you’re tired of it, that’s a different life. I know that it will be hard, but keep pushing. Great things are waiting for you!”
Tell us your most important advice to someone in early recovery?
“Don’t stop, don’t give up. One of the misconceptions of recovery that I had, is that life was going to be great. There were going to be rainbows and butterflies, and lots of great things at all times. Life doesn’t work like that. However, things happen, days are sometimes bad. But it could be so much worse. I would take my bad days today, at any time, over my bad days back in addiction.”