CHARLOTTESVILLE, V.A. (WVIR) - A central Virginia woman is proving you can turn your life around with the right support systems. On Tuesday, she graduated from the Family Treatment Court program with help from her family, and Region Ten.
Brittany Landes is the latest, but certainly not last person to graduate from this program. Now, she says she wants to help encourage others to get the help they need.
“If I can do it, anybody can,” Landes said.
Landes graduated from the Voluntary Family Treatment Court program on Tuesday.
“We have the purpose of helping family substance abuse disorders overcome those disorders. It’s a very tough program to get through but our graduate today was our 64th graduate of the program so it’s a big milestone not only for that participant but also for the program,” Family Treatment Court Judge David Barredo said.
After 17 years of being an active addict, Landes says she feels healthier and happier now that she is sober. “It's really hard because you're retraining your brain from the way that it's used to functioning every day. Seventeen years I was in active addiction, so I didn't know any other way to live.
One of her biggest motivators during the 13-month program was regaining custody of her four-year-old twin daughters.
“They were taken in like placed in foster care last year due to my addiction,” Landes said. “One time. In the beginning, it almost cost me my life I relapsed. But through that, I think that in my recovery, I found that every single step that I've taken it's taught me something.”
Now, Landes wants others to understand that while the program is tough, it is worth it. “Life doesn't get better by chance it gets better by change. You have to be willing to make a change for your life. If you and your kids are important enough and they mean that much to you then you'll do it.”
The program required a series of therapy sessions and other meetings. Landes says she plans to keep up those. In the short term, she is looking forward to celebrating Thanksgiving with her family and support group.