Offer Hope, Restore Dignity, & Transform Lives

Through therapy and support, Cecilia left Theodora House with confidence and hope

When I first came to Theodora House in Indianapolis about 2 ½ years ago, I didn't want to be there. But I had to since it was part of my sentence. I spent a few months in jail and then I had to live in Theodora House for the rest of my time - 3 years total.

I didn't want to be in a halfway house because I didn't want to work, and on top of all of that, there was a gap in my insurance so I didn't have my medicine. And so, with those two problems combined, I didn't adjust and I was angry. Before I knew it I was collapsing pretty bad and one day I had a breakdown.

I remember that I was hysterical, my head hurt, everything was spinning around, and I was just devastated. The staff tried to console me, but I could not calm down. Finally they told me to go downstairs because somebody wanted to speak with me. And it was Ms. Shannon. She set me down, and we had a long talk. She helped me calm down. And then she helped me see and embrace my path and solution. She stayed with me until I felt better. Once I was ok again, the staff got me medication and proper treatment to help me keep it together.

She set me down, and we had a long talk. She helped me calm down. And then she helped me see and embrace my path and solution. She stayed with me until I felt better.

After all of that, I accepted my situation as a resident of Theodora House and made some decisions about what to do about it. It took help from people, a lot of praying, crying, and punching my pillow. I told God, "You have given me the strength to do many things, and I know that if I open my eyes, you will show me exactly what steps I have to take while I'm here." So I decided to use this place to benefit me. I asked God for help on four things:

  1. Help me to be able to get therapy and learn from the unique and strong people who work at Theodora House.
  2. Help me buy a house
  3. Help me get $10,000 in my savings.
  4. Help me to not cut my hair (it was real short when I first got here).

Now, by the grace of Jesus, I have achieved all of those four goals and I am leaving on the 30th of June.

Now, by the grace of Jesus, I have achieved all four of those goals and I am leaving on the 30th of June.

First, I started going to therapy with Ms. Rachel at the behavioral health clinic for 11 months. I worked really hard. She helped me separate the crime from my behavior so that I could face myself. I remember one time she asked me, "How are YOU?" I said, "What do you mean?" She asked again, "Who are you? Who would you like to be?" I responded "I don't know. I don't know. I don't know I never thought of that." That was a changing point for me.

She also helped me realize that I can succeed, that I deserve it, and that I'm worth it. People like me who go through the criminal justice system are too familiar with failure. You fall again and again and continue to build up bruises and don't deal with them. When staff members at a work-release facility tell you that you'll make it, you say, and then what? Then what do I do? It's scary. But through therapy with Rachel, I could embrace and perceive my success. Otherwise, I couldn't do it. 11 months at the behavioral health clinic was amazing, Ms. Rachel really helped me a lot.

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After therapy, I was like, *deep breath*, and I learned to work. I got a job at Subway and I was scared to death, I cried a few times. Because I would go to the front of the line and people would yell, "You're doing it wrong!" I would start to freak out, but then I would stop, breathe, and recoup. And eventually, I became a store manager with a key! I was then in charge of the people who used to raise their voice at me!


With that job, I got to my goal of saving $10,000 and I also got a house, I've been going to it every week for the past few months and I've furnished it with brand new everything. (So now I have $7,000 because I had to buy all of my appliances *laugh*.) I'm so excited.

With all of that, I feel I'll never be the same. God knew what my path needed to be. Now I am walking out with my head up, stronger than ever. Stronger than ever.

With all of that, I feel I'll never be the same. God knew what my path needed to be. Now I am walking out with my head up, stronger than ever. Stronger than ever.

It takes someone special to work at Theodora House. They are employees, but they're also in the business of rebuilding women. I'm also excited because I can continue to get free counseling at the behavioral health clinic through my insurance! I could be there all day. The staff members at Theodora House are so amazing, and I know without their support I would never have changed.