Amanda's Story of Possibility
Product Manager & Creative Lead
“I'm finally achieving wholeness. My mental, spiritual, physical and financial health are being positively affected."
After moving to a new school in the fifth grade, Amanda began to experience bullying.
Having excelled in school and being thrust into a new environment caused her to feel like an outsider. The desire to fit in and find acceptance in her peers, to cope with her intense anxieties, led Amanda to experiment with different kinds of drugs. Then, Amanda was involved in a car accident. She was given prescription pain medication for her injuries. The pain medication eventually led to a heroin addiction.
Overcoming her addiction was an arduous task.
Amanda had to confront the shame and regret she felt from the pain she caused her family and children and from the things addiction drove her to; “That wasn’t even me looking back, it’s like I was a totally different person. So those thoughts creep in, and it takes work to overcome them”. Being a mother and believing in God helped keep Amanda on the path to recovery when some days became especially rough. Sobriety is a choice made every day which is not always easy.
Amanda’s story at Unshattered began with her desire to pursue a job that would employ her inherent creativity.
Creativity has been a gift and passion of Amanda’s for as long as she can remember. As someone who decorated cakes when she was younger, her ability to envision designs that could turn into an amazing final product foreshadowed her future at Unshattered. She was told about Unshattered and our handbag production and decided to give it a try. She’s now the brain behind some of our most popular designs and regularly uses her imagination to craft one-of-a-kind pieces.
Since joining Unshattered, Amanda has been given the opportunity to speak at the White House, take part in the Leadership Dutchess program in 2020, and be recognized as one of the 40 Under 40 recipients by the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce. “I have financial independence. It has increased my confidence. I’ve been given a platform to share that recovery is possible. I have a sense of community and purpose here.”
Life in recovery has brought Amanda immense pride as a mother, “I’m most proud of the mother that I am. I’m not perfect, but I love my kids. I said before that what I put them through was a great source of shame and one of the hardest things to overcome, but they are my greatest gifts of recovery”. Open communication with her children and turning her story into a valuable life lesson has encouraged a healthy and loving relationship and hope that they can avoid the mistakes she made.
Throughout her addiction, Amanda fought hard just to survive, often satisfying her addiction no matter the cost. Now, she’s using her drive in a more positive way. “I feel like people who are in addiction go to great lengths to survive and really have amazing skill sets and gifts that we’re just using for the wrong reason.” Amanda continues to fight hard but in a much more positive and fulfilling way. She’s well on her way to achieving her college degree in business administration and she refuses to give up what she wants out of life: hope, and wholeness.