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Shannon Long’s road to recovery

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Staff photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon Long talks with her doctor in Bridgton about eventually weening off her Suboxone prescription. After years of stops and starts on her path to recovery, Shannon, 24, has been clean for seven months with the help of Suboxone but feels she won't be fully clean until she is no longer using it. Staff photos by Brianna Soukup

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    For 18 months, Shannon thought she had her drug issues managed with Suboxone before she relapsed.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Staff photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon and her daughter, Hope, kneel and pray during services at Woodstock Seventh-Day Adventist Church in Bryant Pond. Shannon augments her medication-assisted treatment with group meetings with other people in recovery and tries to go at least once a week. She spends most of her time with Hope, who is now almost 5.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon wipes away tears after listening to Matt Baker, right, a sergeant at the Oxford County Sheriff's Department, who told high school students in Jay about the daughter he lost to an overdose. Shannon shared her own story at the event and she has a unique connection with Baker. After his daughter's death, he advocated to get supplies of Narcan, the drug used to reverse the effects of an overdose, into the hands of Oxford County police. Shannon happened to be the first person saved by one of those officers administering the drug.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon talks with Hope after having lunch with her extended family at her cousin's house. Shannon relies a lot on her grandmother now and during childhood lived with other members of her extended family after her parents' divorce.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    When Shannon finally broke down and asked for help, her family said they would care for Hope and help pay for Shannon’s treatment.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon carries her belongings out to her grandmother's car after having lunch with family.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Staff photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon listens to her therapist during a recent counseling session. During an earlier relapse she stopped going to counseling, but now she diligently keeps her appointments to address the emotional issues underlying her substance abuse.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon tries to coax her new puppy up the stairs at her cousin's home in West Paris.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon got pregnant with Hope at 18 and realized she had become dependent on drugs.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Hope peeks out of a tent at her home in Bethel. By the time Hope was 6 months old, Shannon stopped breast-feeding over fears she might do her daughter long-lasting harm.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon has been in recovery from opiate addiction since September.

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    Shannon Long’s road to recovery - Staff photo by Brianna Soukup | of | Share this photo

    Shannon and Hope at their home in Bethel. Shannon has been keeping two journals throughout her recovery: one for herself, the other for Hope. Someday Shannon wants her daughter to understand the recovery struggle and doesn’t want to forget anything, even the bad.

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