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Last Day

Author: Lemonada Media

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Let's talk about what’s killing us, the stuff that’s hard to comprehend and getting worse every day. Lemonada co-founder and author Stephanie Wittels Wachs confronts massive epidemics with humanity, wit, and a quest for progress. Starting with overdose deaths and the opioid crisis, we zoom in on a person’s last day of life, exploring how they got there and how we, as a society, have gotten here.

28 Episodes
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Sneak Peek: Season 2

Sneak Peek: Season 2

2020-04-0108:30

We know, we know. We said we were done, but surprise! We’re back to reveal the topic for Last Day Season 2, ask for story submissions, and tell you a little bit about what goes on behind the scenes around here. Tune in! www.lemonadamedia.com/patreon Email us your story ideas to hey@lemonadamedia.com International Association for Suicide Prevention National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255 The Trevor Project Befrienders Worldwide Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
25: Finale

25: Finale

2020-03-2548:352

This week marks our 25th and final episode of Last Day, Season One. Today, Stephanie and Jess sit down--virtually--to reflect on favorite interviews and ah-ha moments, noting the ways the show has changed along the way and the moments that have changed them most. We also look at what’s next for the Last Day family with an exciting announcement!   Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  https://harmreduction.org/ www.lemonadamedia.com/patreon www.betterhelp.com/lastday Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
24: On the Front Lines

24: On the Front Lines

2020-03-1846:482

This week, we meet Isaac Beverly who shares his journey from 5 years in prison to a 5-year medallion. Isaac has found a solid recovery plan that includes medication-assisted treatment at Eleanor Health and strong ties to a 12-step recovery community. His plan is working, and Isaac swears by it….but not everyone is on board. Now, Isaac is willing to make waves in order to make progress. Also! Fan favorite Dave from Dopey stops by to answer some of our burning questions about 12-step programs.    Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.    Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ truebotanicals.com/lastday Betterhelp.com/lastday Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
23: Recovery For Life

23: Recovery For Life

2020-03-1155:002

This week, we continue our treatment tour at Eleanor Health in High Point, North Carolina. It’s a new-ish (and pretty groundbreaking) outpatient clinic with a unique payment model and an emphasis on evidence-based care. We chat with our old friend, Dr. Nzinga A. Harrison, Eleanor’s Chief Medical Officer, about the clinic’s unparalleled access to MAT and their emphasis on a problem-solving, rather than a fit-someone-inside-a-box, approach to treatment. We meet a clinic member who, at 60 years old, is committing to treatment for the very first time. And we meet an incredibly passionate staff as they pull every possible string to get 100% of people who walk through their doors the tools to meet their individual recovery goals.    Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners. Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ rothys.com/lastday betterhelp.com/lastday Dear Young Rocker www.lemonadamedia.com, promo code: Birthday10 https://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/15/opinion/jay-z-the-war-on-drugs-is-an-epic-fail.html Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
22: 28 Days Isn’t Enough

22: 28 Days Isn’t Enough

2020-03-0401:01:565

Addiction treatment in America is like a Rubik’s Cube. We’ve talked about this. We know this. We feel this. But good programs do exist. This week, we visit The Women’s Home in Houston, a non-profit established 60 years ago, to check out their long-term approach to residential treatment. We delve into the nuts and bolts of their program: 18 month stays, 30 hours a week of therapy, hands-on job training, and what’s cooking in the kitchen. And we meet three women with incredible stories of recovery who credit this program with changing their lives.  Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  Family Ghosts 27 Club betterhelp.com/lastday mentalhealthforus.net Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
21: The Blame Game

21: The Blame Game

2020-02-2654:45

This whole season we’ve focused on how to help people with substance use disorders. We’ve talked about the importance of harm-reduction and human connection, destigmatization and education. But to at least one of our listeners—a really important one—something is missing. Why not talk about punishing the people who make and sell drugs? China, Mexico, Purdue, the Sacklers? This week, we talk to two experts—Ben Westhoff, author of Fentanyl, Inc. and David Smith, a healthcare economist—about why it’s so hard to control supply, who’s really to blame, and the potential long-term benefits of billions of dollars in settlement money.   Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.   Show Notes  Mouthpeace with Michael & Pele Bennett Truebotanicals.com/lastday betterhelp.com/lastday http://www.lemonadamedia.com/shop/ Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
20: Love Is the Why

20: Love Is the Why

2020-02-1948:083

DeRay Mckesson and TeRay Ross are world-class community leaders, siblings, and the best of friends. They also grew up surrounded by addiction in both their immediate and extended family. As a result, they spent lots of time as kids hanging out in the back of 12 step meetings, absorbing lessons that continue to impact them as adults. This week, we sit down with DeRay, TeRay, and their dad, Calvin, to talk about how their understanding of addiction has evolved over the years and how they continue to support each other to this day.  Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  wealthfront.com/lastday betterhelp.com/lastday Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
19: Mommy, Again

19: Mommy, Again

2020-02-1238:481

When Emily found out she was pregnant, her life began to snowball in a positive direction. She stopped using heroin, reconnected with family and was rocking it as a new mom to her beloved daughter, Carter. Sadly, Emily relapsed and died when Cater was 9-months old, leaving Emily’s mom, Joanne, to navigate the unexpected journey of becoming a new mom all over again. Today, Carter is four years old and thriving. She loves her Aunt Diane and Grandma “Mommy.” In this episode, we hear the heartfelt story of how one family is adjusting to raising a child, spreading awareness about addiction, and advocating for better policies to help families like theirs. Please note, Last Day contains strong language and mature themes. It may not be suitable for all listeners.  Rothys.com/lastday betterhelp.com/lastday Generations United’s National Center on Grandfamilies Key Notes Podcast  Onsite Grief Workshop Overdosed newsletter by Diane Roznowski Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Brandy and Wilma are two women who have a lot in common. They both grew up in California, they both experienced profound childhood trauma, and they both turned to drugs to soothe their pain. But their stories end very differently. Brandy died 10 years ago, at 28 years old. Wilma is now in her 50’s, approaching 10 years sober and living a busy, meaningful life. In this episode, we look at cycles of trauma and how facing it head-on can make all the difference in recovery. Please note, this episode of Last Day contains graphic details of physical and sexual abuse along with strong language and mature themes. It may not be appropriate for all listeners. casper.com/lastday betterhelp.com/lastday Water By The Spoonful at Stages  Pod Save the People International Association for Suicide Prevention National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255 The Trevor Project Befrienders Worldwide Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dr. Gabor Maté is a world-renowned trauma expert who can (and will) deconstruct your happy childhood in a matter of minutes. At least, that’s what he did to our host, Stephanie. We start this episode with the question, “Why?” Why would someone get addicted to opioids? In this riveting interview, Dr. Maté expands our definition of trauma, breaks down how childhood trauma leaves wounds and how addictions of every kind are an attempt to soothe those wounds, and explains that healing is possible.  Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  Somatic Experiencing from Peter Levine Sensory Motor from Pat Ogden Emotional Feeding Therapy MDMA and other psychedelic therapy studies Compassion Inquiry from Dr. Gabor Maté Internal Family Systems therapy from Richard Shwartz Ketamine Therapy  EMDR Therapy Hold On To Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction When the Body Says No: The Cost of Hidden Stress Scattered Minds: A New Look at the Origins and Healing of Attention Disorder https://drgabormate.com/ Mouthpeace with Michael and Pele Bennett wealthfront.com/LastDay lastday.robinhood.com Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
16: Doing Dopey

16: Doing Dopey

2020-01-2201:00:346

Dave and Chris co-hosted 142 episodes of Dopey, a recovery podcast about “drugs, addiction and dumb shit,” when the worst thing that could have ever happened, happened: Chris relapsed and died. This week, Stephanie sits down with Dave, who’s still hosting Dopey, to chat about Chris’s last day, recovery, and the transformative power of losing someone you love.  Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  DOPEY PODCAST - The Dark Comedy of Drug Addiction | Heroin | Cocaine | Meth | Weed | Drugs | LSD | Recovery | Sobriety Everything Is Horrible and Wonderful: A Tragicomic Memoir of Genius, Heroin, Love, and Loss Broken Justice on Apple Podcasts Lastday.robinhood.com Mouthpeace with Michael & Pele Bennett on Apple Podcasts ‎Food, We Need To Talk on Apple Podcasts ‎Family Ghosts on Apple Podcasts Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
A few years ago, Laurie McTeague noticed her teenage son, Ian, was uncharacteristically depressed. So she went snooping around on his phone and discovered that he’d been widely experimenting with nearly every drug under the sun. What followed was years of relentless searching for effective adolescent treatment while her son continued to relapse again and again. As a parent, how do you navigate this?   Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  Everything Is Horrible and Wonderful: A Tragicomic Memoir of Genius, Heroin, Love and Loss www.lemonadamedia.com/lastdaysurvey  rothys.com/lastday www.lemonadamedia.com/shop Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
14: Last Day of Use

14: Last Day of Use

2020-01-0849:362

This season started with the question: How did we get here? How did Stefano and Harris overdose and die in their early 30s? How did our country lose 400,000 lives to opioids since 1999? In the new year, we turn our attention to other last day stories, and other kinds of last day stories. Brittany and Ahren are high school sweethearts who built a life and a family together, when “the blues” came into the picture. Brittany and Ahren talk about Ahren’s addiction, his last days of using, one ugly night, their joint recovery, and what gives them hope for the future. Plus, addiction medicine doctor Dr. Charles Reznikoff shares his approach to early recovery.   Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  Dr. Charles Reznikoff, M.D. Casper.com/LASTDAY promo code LASTDAY Nativedeodorant.com promo code LASTDAY wealthfront.com/LastDay Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
We asked. You answered. This week, we hear from Last Day listeners about why the holidays are so hard, different, stressful, all of the adjectives. Stephanie chats with Dr. Neha Kumar, a clinical psychologist, about tips to get through the season and ways we can honor our loved ones who are no longer with us. Drug and alcohol counselor Wilma Hawkinson discusses being newly sober during the holidays and the importance of making new memories; Miss Ian Callaghan, Executive Director of San Francisco Drug Users Union, provides useful advice for those who have someone with active addiction in their lives; and comedian James Tison explains how boundaries keep holiday gatherings healthy. Plus, a very special letter from Santa.  Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.    San Francisco Drug Users' Union James Tison Vistaprint.com promo code LASTDAY Nativedeodorant.com promo code LASTDAY Mylola.com promo code LASTDAY Reset podcast Eleanor Health Boomtown podcast Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Continue the conversation on your phone at https://flick.group/lastday.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
12: What I Know Now

12: What I Know Now

2019-12-1136:421

This week, Stephanie sits down with the parents—Stefano’s and her own—to dig into where everyone is with their grief, understanding, and personal responsibility around what happened to their sons. Hint, hint: The moms and dads are in very different places.  Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be suitable for all listeners.  Broken Justice podcast Casper.com/LASTDAY  (promo code LASTDAY) SimpliSafe.com/LASTDAY TalkSpace.com (promo code LASTDAY) Policygenuis.com Reset podcast In this episode, Steph’s mom makes an off-handed comment about suicide. If you or someone you love needs support, reach out to Suicidepreventionlife.org or call 1-800-273-8255.  Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Continue the conversation on your phone at https://flick.group/lastday.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
11: Wake Me Up

11: Wake Me Up

2019-12-0450:584

This week, we circle back to where this story began — on the ground, in Boston, with Jess. Joined by new voices (Gary Mendell, Michael Botticelli, Mayor Marty Walsh) and familiar ones (Stefano’s wife, Paige), Jess delves into what it’s been like to produce a show that’s so deeply personal. By the end of the episode, she’s finally able to answer the question that drove her to create the show in the first place: What could I have done differently?  Please note, Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.  Shatterproof.org Knock and Talk - Boston Michael Botticelli’s TED Talk: “Addiction is a disease. We should treat it like one.” Grayken Center Boston’s Office of Recovery Services Good Kids Podcast Stamps.com (promo code LAST DAY) mejuri.com/lastday mybillie.com/LASTDAY  Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/ Continue the conversation on your phone at https://flick.group/lastday.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
This week, Stephanie sits down with Garth Mullins, who hosts an award-winning podcast in Canada called Crackdown, which is also about drugs. The difference? Garth is coming at it from the perspective of a drug user. The plan was to talk about international solutions and Garth's recent reporting in Portugal (which they do discuss) but they also compare notes as two podcasters making shows based on personal trauma. And in the process, Stephanie has a huge revelation.  The holidays are approaching, whether we like it or not. Whatever you’re going through, we would love to hear your stories, your concerns, and your tips for making it through to the new year. Even if you just want to share a happy memory of your person! Share your holiday stories with us at 1-833-4LEMONADA or via voice memo at hey@lemonadamedia.com.    Continue the conversation on your phone at https://flick.group/lastday. Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.    Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/. Last Day is presented by www.newchapter.com. Crackdown Podcast Crackdown Podcast: The Portugal Paradox  Garth Mullins everlane.com/lastday Native Deodorant (promo code LASTDAY) Mejuri.com/lastday Good Kids Podcast Your Primary Playlist Podcast  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
9: Kids At Ground Zero

9: Kids At Ground Zero

2019-11-1351:463

This week, we talk about the variety of ways that children are affected by the opioid crisis. Also, Stephanie has a breakdown because it’s hard to accept the things you cannot change. In this episode, she sits down with Peter who describes the process of adopting three kids born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome; The Seattle Times’ Claudia Rowe who gives an overview of how this epidemic is impacting kids in the foster care system; and Kendra Cram and Ryan McGraw from Minford Elementary in Ohio, who have created a program that addresses social and emotional learning for kids who have been impacted by trauma.  Continue the conversation on your phone at https://flick.group/lastday. Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.    Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/. Last Day is presented by www.newchapter.com. Claudia Rowe for the Seattle Times New York Times story on Minford Elementary Casper.com/lastday (promo code LASTDAY) hellofresh.com/LASTDAY80 Talkspace (promo code LASTDAY) Good Kids: How Not to Raise An A**hole An Arm and A Leg Dopey Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
8: America Is Insane

8: America Is Insane

2019-11-0644:017

While “opioids” has become a political buzzword, national policy on opioids is virtually nonexistent. Our system is nowhere near able to meet the needs of those who desperately need help. So what’s it going to take to move the needle, so to speak? Stephanie sits down with Congressman Patrick Kennedy to talk about legislation and funding (see: lack of funding) for mental health and addiction; Sarah Gad about her dramatic journey from Cook County jail inmate to congressional candidate; and Andy Slavitt about what we should be looking for if we care about this issue as we head into election season. Continue the conversation on your phone at https://flick.group/lastday. Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.    Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/. Last Day is presented by www.newchapter.com.   Show Notes:  The Kennedy Forum Sarah Gad for Congress Andy Slavitt  mybillie.com/lastday Encyclopedia Womannica Mental Health for US Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
7: 20,000 Fewer Funerals

7: 20,000 Fewer Funerals

2019-10-3046:477

We’ve tried arresting people. We’ve tried shuffling them from place to place. We’ve tried shaming them into sobriety. What would happen if, instead, we met people where they’re at? Stephanie talks to Ithaca’s Mayor Svante Myrick and Bronx harm-reductionist Hiawatha Collins about the inequities of our justice system and how we can do better, including treating all people with dignity and respect, going into communities and reducing potential risk, and creating medically-staffed safe spaces for drug use. It may sound controversial, but according to data worldwide, it could mean 20,000 fewer funerals a year in America. Step into the no-judgment zone. All are welcome here.    Continue the conversation on your phone at https://flick.group/lastday. Last Day contains strong language, mature themes, and may not be appropriate for all listeners.    Transcriptions available shortly after air date at https://www.lemonadamedia.com/show/last-day/.  Last Day is presented by www.newchapter.com.   Show  Notes:  • Harm Reduction Coalition • Insite Supervised Consumption Site • Parks & Recreation  • Lola (promo code LASTDAY) • Pod Save the People Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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Comments (41)

Chuck Panzarella

Thanks so much guys for opening an addict's eyes whose in recovery. Im more confident now in my mat program instead of feeling like I need to hide. It allows me to live just for today!

Mar 26th
Reply

BC

What a wonderful episode

Mar 12th
Reply

Chuck Panzarella

this is information that all people should hear.im in recovery.... and thought I'd heard everything.....how wrong I was.

Mar 9th
Reply

Chuck Panzarella

best fuckin podcast I've ever heard......factual and heart felt

Feb 23rd
Reply

kc Shaver

Stephanie- I love it. I passed it along to my sister who has had to live with the possibility of me dying for many years. I am in remission now and love your words of encouragement.

Feb 19th
Reply

BC

Every episode of this podcast is wonderful.

Feb 16th
Reply

Melissa

I love this podcast. But I don't why because it makes to cry in every episode.

Feb 14th
Reply

BC

That is a truly hard childhood.

Feb 6th
Reply

Andi-Roo Libecap

This was really hard to listen to. Such a tragedy,,, truly heartbreaking. I hope Stephanie found some solace in making this podcast about her brother's overdose, and I hope it helps others who suffer with drug addiction.

Feb 2nd
Reply

Klaudia Stewart

very, very interesting episode!

Jan 29th
Reply

BC

this is something I stumbled across and is not mine. I think it was referenced in one of the earlier episodes. “Never Use Alone” is a number you can call when you have no choice but to use when you’re alone. If you call (800) 484-3731, an operator will answer your call, and ask for your first name, location and whether you have any allergies, or medical conditions. After you’ve given us this information you can go ahead and inject your substance. After you’ve ingested the substance, we will continue communicating with you. If you do not respond after 30-45 seconds, we will notify emergency services of a possible overdose at the location you’ve given us. We will never shame you, judge you, or preach at you to quit. If you are ready to quit though, we have treatment resources for every state in the US. Regardless if you have insurance, or not. We will do our best to connect you with the help you need. please call. We are on standby. https://www.facebook.com/Neverusealone/

Jan 28th
Reply

E J

I am not hearing anything from this mother about "higher power". Why is that??

Jan 15th
Reply

Heather Boylen

Best epissode❤️ love you Mr Snodgrass!

Jan 14th
Reply (1)

Chuck Panzarella

Sometimes I personally feel guilty for being on Suboxone... especially in a NA meeting...but listening to your entire catalog made me realize that it allows me to live instead of die and function at work all the while while learning how to STAY clean. I could always get clean but no serious length of time... excellent research...Thank!!

Jan 14th
Reply

Heather Boylen

I am a heroin addict and suboxone saves me. I do not understand why the government makes it so difficult to get medication assisted help. Addicts have families and jobs just like anyone else. Not that many people can take a month off cold turkey and it hardly works even if they can. It is so easier and more helpful to assist people instead of punishing them. And cost effective.

Jan 11th
Reply

E J

Great podcast. Must listen for "normies" 😏

Jan 8th
Reply (1)

Tony Hubler

Awesome episode

Dec 18th
Reply (1)

Suzanne Hubbard Gerken

I have lost two siblings, not to opioids, but unexpectedly and young(ish). I mean, I'm there youngest so they're all old compared to me, ya know? So yeah, life seriously sucks when you lose a brother or sister. Unless you are actually old, it just isn't natural and probably isn't natural even then. I love your podcast and my daughter is recovering from addiction (7 years)

Dec 13th
Reply (4)

Need ID Indeed

Why does Stefanos wife talk like 14 year old teen?! Jesus.. Like umm I don't know but like.. For me it's like you know not to be mean but please stop its annoying as fuck.

Dec 11th
Reply

BC

This is the best episode of this season.

Dec 9th
Reply (1)
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