Drug court graduates open a new chapter in their lives - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Drug court graduates open a new chapter in their lives

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By  Julie Straw - bio | email | twitter

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Those who have struggles with addiction know how hard it is to get sober and stay sober.  That is what makes Friday night's celebration for ten people so remarkable.   Thanks to a decade old program in Hinds County it is not that uncommon either.

"That was the one thing that got me and held on to me," said 39-year-old Cylena Knowles talking about crack cocaine, the drug that once ruled and ruined her life.

One thing led to another and I didn't see the signs as they were happening and refused to admit that Ii had a problem.  I did walk out of Judge Skinners court and say I'd see him at trial," said Knowles.

She refused Hinds County Circuit Drug Court the first time, but after getting into more trouble that led to DHS taking away her two youngest children Knowles finally agreed to go.

"It has made me who I am today.  It has made me the mother I want to be and want to grow to be," said Knowles.

Now 11 year old Jodi and 13 year old Triston are back living with their mother.

"It's a lot better than it used to be and I'm really happy for her," said Jodi Knowles.

"It went from everything being bad and us not being able to do anything or afford anything to being a normal family," said Triston Knowles.

"She is one of the ones that decided her kids were more important than drugs and worked her tail off to get through this program.  She'd done very good and I'm proud of her," said Hinds County Circuit Drug Court Judge Bill Skinner.

At the ceremony Knowles stands before her nine fellow drug court graduates knowing this is a second chance at life for all of them.

"This closes one chapter, but it opens so many more," said Knowles.

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