Stepping into the Thistle Farms Logistics Department, there is the distant whoosh of the labeling machine and the occasional beep of the forklift. There are voices and music, and the comforting aroma of freshly poured lavender candles surrounds us. It's February, and after a surprise day of sunshine, the Nashville sky has settled back into it’s rainy winter gray, sending everyone back inside to hibernate a while longer. For some, there is a specific melancholy to a morning like this, a morning when our most closely guarded thoughts seem to swirl around us.
2019 Thistle Farms Residential graduate Michelle (above, center) goes about her work quietly. She’s a careful worker with an eye for detail, and a true friend to all who love her. Just as the air and sky feel heavy today, so does the weight of the unresolved and the unknown.
“I have disabilities in the areas of physical and mental health. I’ve seen the worst of addiction, sickness, and the inside of jail cells. I haven’t learned how to fully trust myself yet. I want to look at the future and see nothing but positive possibilities but sometimes it's hard to see past the scary ones. We all know people who died out there.”
Tears fill Michelle’s eyes - eyes that find it challenging today to see beyond the negative experiences of the past. The exact eyes we all look through sometimes.
“To be honest, the days ahead scare me. But even in that fear I have an underlying peace that's relatively new to me. I know that I am loved and supported. I know that I have a compassionate community of sisters who care for me. I’m thankful for recovery and second chances and for the opportunity to speak my truth, even on the days when that truth isn’t completely cheerful.”
We're thankful for Michelle, and the honesty with which the worldwide recovery community approaches the complexities of recovery. And we honor the difficult days as much as the easy days. If you or someone you know is suffering from the realities of trafficking, trauma, or addition, there is hope. Learn about our residential recovery program here.