Drug abuse for Kendon Cagle started at a very young age and continued throughout his life. But there were two things that led to his recovery, his love for God and his love for his children.
“My dad died when I was 9 and that was my first addiction, I started fighting,” Cagle said.
Things, for Cagle, escalated from there.
“When I was 11, I tried my first pain pill. So, I started doing opioids first.” Cagle said.
He would spend most of his life battling his addictions, in and out of treatment. He remembers hitting rock bottom when his children were taken into DHS custody.
“That was the hardest part for me. When I was in treatment, I was facing my problems without doing drugs. If you’ve never had to do that, that’s hard,” Cagle said.
Being in a treatment facility and watching his kids cry as they would leave changed his perspective.
“But I think somewhere in there, God allowed me to feel their pain. And I know that sounds crazy, but it started not being about my pain, but more about their pain,” Cagle said.
He completed the program, determined to do whatever he had to do to get children back.
“Throughout that, there were a lot of struggles. It was not smooth sailing at all. There were a lot of struggles and things like that but you gotta push through,” he said.
After three years, on July 21, the family got the long-awaited news from DHS – case closed.
“They were so excited, whenever I told them about it. They were just jumping up and down. It was probably one of the biggest accomplishments of my life,” Cagle said.
Cagle spends a lot of time helping others that are struggling with addictions. He tells them not to focus on the shame and the guilt.
“Be strong and do whatever you have to do for your kids,” he said.