A P.E.I. woman has turned her own first-hand account of having son with an addiction problem into a story featured in the most recent book in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series.
Rose Barbour hopes she can help others going through similar challenges with her story that will appear in Think Possible: 101 Stories About Using a Positive Attitude to Improve Your Life.
"As an advocate for people who struggle with addictions and their families, I'm always looking for opportunities to raise awareness and spread some hope, because you can feel so hopeless when you're in the middle of it," said Barbour.
Last March, when checking out the Chicken Soup for the Soul website to find out about their submission guidelines, Barbour noticed one of the upcoming titles was Think Possible.
''Maybe they'll see the pain that people go through when they're dealing with addiction.' - Rose Barbour, addictions advocate
"I already had a story that I had written that would fit with it and would just need to be modified a little bit to give the Chicken Soup for the Soul feel where the reader really wants to feel the story."
She says the story is about the stigma that surrounds addiction and "goes on to be a story of help."
Barbour submitted her manuscript, never imagining she would hear back from the publishers.
She received an email in July that her story had beaten out thousands to be shortlisted.
While Barbour tried not to think about it too much, she says she did allow herself to consider how much exposure addiction awareness would receive if her story was actually published.
In August, she got the news the story was going to be in the book.
"It was just an incredible thrill and I cried because when you're an addictions advocate, a lot of the work that you do, the things that you write and any media that you do, a lot of the time it's people who already experience addiction who pay the most attention, so it's hard to get that mainstream audience," said Barbour.
"So someone is going to be reading the book and getting inspired and they come across my story about addiction and maybe they'll see the pain that people go through when they're dealing with addiction — their own or a loved one's — and for people who are going through it they'll have some hope."
Barbour says her son is two years in recovery, has graduated from Holland College and is now working in the trades.
Barbour remains an advocate for those with addictions.
The launch takes place Tuesday night from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Reach Centre in Stratford.
Some proceeds from book sales will go toward the Reach Centre, which supports young people recovering from addiction and University of Prince Edward Island's student affairs mental health initiatives.