Melissa BarkerOffice Manager/Certified Recovery Coach
My addiction began at 25 years old. Like many others I didn’t come from a family that understood or had experienced addiction themselves. I grew up in a small town with loving parents and two younger sisters. At the age of 17 years old I met my abuser. 12 years later and 3 children later the physical and mental abuse had become so much I began using. During my addiction I had countless arrests and served a prison sentence in 2015. During my incarceration I was able to educate myself on addiction and domestic violence. I knew in my heart I would someday help others.
Upon my release from Indiana Dept of Corrections I chose to work a 6 month program in a women’s recovery house, Seeds of Hope. I began counseling for the first time in my life. I am a firm believer that counseling is what kept me sober this time. I started a job at Indianapolis Yellow cab as a call taker. Over the course of 2 years I accepted a position as the communications manager. I had graduated from Seeds of Hope and regained custody of my three children. I then created a program approved by the owners of Indianapolis Yellow Cab and was able to hire any woman released from prison or chose to willingly go to Seeds of Hope. I managed a call center with 25 women in recovery and it definitely felt like my calling. I went back to prison and spoke to women because I wanted to give them hope through sharing my own lived experiences.
In January 2020 sadly Indianapolis Yellow Cab sold and my search for a new career began. In February 2020 I accepted a position as the office manager at Lucas Counseling Group. I knew this was the best fit for me. What I didn’t know was my life would continue to change for the better with my hard work and determination.
In 2021, I decided to become a Certified Peer Recovery Coach because it is my passion to help others and help people in early recovery grow. I feel that sometimes in early recovery we all need a non biased outsider to help us navigate through life. We face the most challenging issues when we first choose to become sober. I am highly motivated in helping others create a clear plan of action, provide resources that are helpful and needed along with listening and offering my best guidance without judgment because I have been there. We all make mistakes in life. It’s up to us to learn and grow from them. My goal is to help others live the best life they can possibly live and become the best version of themselves.
My 2 favorite quotes:
“I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy, I’m telling you it’s going to be worth it”
“Sometimes the wrong choices bring us to the right places”