Madison Osborne

As a young girl growing up Madison Osborne, 28, was a typical child who enjoyed exploring the outdoors with a passion for rock collecting as her hobby. In her adolescent years an unexpected event would lead her down a path of substance abuse, but like many who have wrestled with substance abuse Osbourne reached a breaking point that led her to recovery.

Blue Water Recovery & Outreach Center (BWROC), a non-profit recovery community organization founded in 2017, became one of the places that helped Osbourne begin to get her life back on track and on the road to recovery. BWROC isn’t the typical recovery organization, as they operate under a unique, peer-driven, non-clinical support system led by others in recovery. The peer-driven system has been an effective means of helping individuals because those who have been down the road of substance abuse are more familiar with the means of what works and what doesn’t in real world situations. The organization has recently been awarded the prestigious CAPRSS Accreditation by the Council on Accreditation of Peer Recovery Support Services, a testament to their dedication of providing participants with the highest quality service.

Osborne is currently enrolled in college at St. Clair County Community College where she is majoring in Psychology/Sociology. She will be starting her third semester in the fall. Things are looking up for the college student who’s traumatic past that led her to substance abuse almost ruined her future.

“When I was 13 my grandmother choked to death in front of me, and that was the first major trauma I experienced that made me want to escape reality. ” says Osborne.

It was shortly after this incident that her life would be altered for the next 10 years due to substance abuse. “The first time I began using drugs I believe I was 14 years old, and my drug of choice was methamphetamines,” Osborne states. “My drug usage led to me making poor decisions that affected my relationships with people. I found myself involved with a guy who was extremely abusive, but the hardest and most negative impact drugs had on me was the drug induced psychosis.”

Still living at home with her mom at the time, Osborne says that her mom’s decision to pack up and move was the catalyst to her seeking recovery. “At that time I decided to stay with my boyfriend who ended up putting his hands on me again. I had a moment of clarity and realized that what he was doing to me wasn’t my fault, but I did choose to continue to stay and allow it to happen. Enough was enough and I finally reached out to my dad to help me get into rehab. My hardest decision was reaching out and asking for help and taking that step to enter rehab. I was really afraid of the unknown,” says Osborne.

With her dad’s help and support, who just celebrated 36 years clean and sober, she moved to Port Huron in 2022 where she met BWROC Peer Recovery Coach Nicole Bickel.

“When I began rehab Nicole was working there, and she helped get me into recovery housing and also introduced me to BWROC. They helped me find the resources needed to keep me on the right path and also helped me to love myself again which was a huge deal to me. Nicole asked me to name ten things I loved about myself and I couldn’t do it, but I eventually was able to with her continued support and guidance, ” says Osborne.

Madison was ordered to do 60 hours of community service in Port Huron based on orders issued by her probation officer in Grand Rapids which led to her doing volunteer work for BWROC a few days per week. Although she no longer volunteers at BWROC, Madison is currently a sponsor for women attending Narcotics Anonymous where she helps walk them through the 12 Step program.

As a survivor of early childhood trauma and a methamphetamine addiction, Osborne has a bright future in which she desires to graduate college and to get involved in the work of helping individuals dealing with mental health issues. She is also currently in the process of getting her Michigan Driver License reinstated, and would like to one day become a mother.

The road to recovery is a never ending journey in which some individuals struggle with relapsing and falling back into their old habits, but when asked about what advice she would give those seeking the road to recovery, Madison offered some inspiring words of encouragement and wisdom. “My advice to anyone looking to start their recovery journey would be to just be courageous, be brave and take that first step, because you’ll never know what’s on the other side of fear if you don’t try.”

Osborne has currently been on her recovery journey for two years and is having great success through her support system and friends at BWROC. Her story is a testament to those individuals who may be afraid to take the first step to recovery, and how making that decision can be the difference of life and death, or some other tragic fate brought on by substance abuse.

If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, learn more about what you can do by contacting the Blue Water Recovery and Outreach Center at (810) 689-4858 or via email at: