Kimberlee Boland has been advocating for better access to treatment for addictions on the Burin Peninsula
FORTUNE, N.L. — Kimberlee Boland is over two years into her recovery from addiction, and the fact that she can now access help closer to home is aiding her in that process.
The Fortune woman says a monthly addictions clinic being held in Marystown will give individuals on the Burin Peninsula trying to overcome addictions better access to treatment such as the methadone program.
In December, Dr. Todd Young — who operates the Main Street Medical Clinic in Springdale — started flying into Marystown, Clarenville and St. John’s to offer face-to-face treatment for persons with opioid addictions.
“Having it closer makes a world of difference,” said Boland. “There is a few people (in the program) that work, that go to school, that can’t afford to take a lot of time off to go for their appointment.”
Boland said before becoming a patient of Young, she would travel eight hours to and from St. John’s once a month to see her previous doctor.
Even before the local clinics were offered locally, Boland would have meetings with Young through telemedicine.
The first clinic in Marystown was held on Wednesday, Jan. 9.
“When I was there that morning I seen at least 25 people come and go,” Boland observed. “That was in a span of an hour and a half.”
Boland first shared her battle with addiction with The Southern Gazette in 2017. At the time of the interview she was approaching one-year drug free, an accomplishment she credited to being part of the methadone treatment program.
Her addiction had led to several run-ins with the law, a period of incarceration and having her son placed in the care of a family member.
Boland, who is now going on two-years drug free, told The Southern Gazette that a year later things are still improving for her in all aspects of her life physically, mentally and emotionally.
“Since the program, I have everything on my side again and it's a great feeling,” she explained. “I also have my confidence back. My family got the real ‘Kimberlee’ back.”
She also has her son living with her full-time again.
“Best feeling I’ve felt in a very long time,” she said of getting her son back. “Finally, after all the fighting I went through with my addiction and all I've done to become clean, I can finally say my biggest goal after getting clean was finally achieved.”
Boland noted that after 24-months she tried to wean herself off the program.
She was off the program for approximately a month when she said she started going through withdrawal.
“In my head, I knew I wasn’t ready to face life without the help of methadone,” she said. “Every addict has to be physically, mentally and emotionally ready and I wasn’t, and by the time I realized that, I had the program give up.”
“I thought it was a good thing to do, but I really was not ready for it, so I ended up going back to the program again. It seemed like that was the best step for me.”