Drug interventionist for Addicted on TLC, Kristina Wandzilak says there’s hope for addicts everywhere.
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Kristina Wandzilak on Drug Addiction and Rehabilitation Dr. Travis Stork: She is with us today, welcome Klea. Thank you. Klea: Thank you. Dr. Travis Stork: So you looked great. How long have you been sober? Klea: I have five months today. Dr. Travis Stork: But let’s go back in time because some terrifying things we’re watching on that clip, what was it like at your lowest point? Klea: I see like-- especially on that that was probably my lowest point with what you saw there. It’s such a desperate, lonely place to be and what’s scary, you know you're going to die but you think you're going to die if you can’t use. It’s just a horrible place to be before Kristina came into my life. I definitely was hopeless and I thought nothing could ever change for me. I thought I’ve gone too far and that there was just no way that I can get clean myself and even if I got clean for a little bit of time I would have ended up just going back to my old habits. Dr. Travis Stork: And Kristina you can relate to Klea’s story personally. Kristina Wandzilak: I can. Almost 17 years ago I was home on the streets of San Francisco and found my last drink in a dumpster. I sold my body. I robbed homes. I robbed cars I sold with other people. I did whatever I have to do to survive. Seventeen years ago, I never thought in a thousand years that I would be sitting here with you today. I mean that’s the amazing gift of sobriety and recovery that addicts can get and stay sober. We do recover and then I can sit here before you today, a woman that is a wife, a mother and author. I'm an all-American athlete and an asthmatic and an all-American drug addict with almost 17 years recovery. And the gift is I'm defined by none and that’s the hope for Klea and for all the young people here. That’s the message I hope to pass through addicted and through I'm on a recovery that it’s never too late. It’s never too late as long as you are still breathing it is never too late to change. Dr. Travis Stork: Well, Klea we’ve got Amanda here. She has been watching this whole show. We have kids at home watching the show who are addicted to drugs. What message can you share with them having been at such low point five months ago? Klea: To me, I think addiction was like before I got really addicted and I was using I had these dreams and goals and it’s like kind of you're going into a forest and there’s like thorns and things that you're going into. You're walking into it and you get lost in the forest. You just can’t -- you forget your goals and you forget your dreams. You forget who you are in the forest and there’s always a time where you can turn around and walk the other way, and walk back out. You need help to walk out. You can’t do it by yourself. Without the help of Kristina, I don’t know where I would be today. I was lost. I was going to die and I felt like that. I know how desperate it feels and I know that you could just get out of it just as easy as you got into it. You don’t even know you can just if you let other people help you, you can go the other way and it could actually work out for you. You can go back to -- maybe you can be even better than you were back then. I promise. Dr. Travis Stork: And Amanda has been watching the whole show. She’s been hearing the stories. We’re going to find out how this has been affecting her in just a minute but I do want to tell everyone the show addicted airs on the TLC channel and I want to thank both of you, not only for sharing your story but for showing everyone who is out there addicted, there is hope. Thank you.