In this episode of Recover Girl, Grammy Award-winning recording artist Sirah, joins me for a brutally honest conversation about her disturbing, crazy, wonderful life of dysfunction, addiction, crime, and music.

About Sirah

No, Sirah is not affiliated with any wine, petite or boxed. Sirah (pronounced sigh-ruh) was born as Sara to a mother and father who met in recovery in New York.

Her dad didn’t stay sober, and at the age of five, Sirah moved with him to Washington state to live with him in a quasi-nudist, off-the-grid lifestyle. Despite his higher ideals, he was a hardcore heroin addict, and Sirah was sometimes forced to hustle money by selling candy on the streets or convincing people to buy rare coins over the phone.

Sirah eventually moved back to New York to live with her sober mother, but things were no better for her there. She was a depressed kid and began using alcohol and drugs, desperately trying to escape her body. When her mother moved to Los Angeles, she was given the option of going into foster care, but chose a life on the streets instead. Sirah then began her descent into a world of gang-banging and drugs that she could’ve easily never have escaped alive.

Sirah and Addiction Recovery

Sirah’s childhood story is probably one of the darkest and most disturbing you will ever hear, but she also tells me about the light she sees within all of her experiences and how they’ve contributed to the person she is today. Sirah has been sober for twelve years and is a recovery advocate who shows everyone in the throes of addiction that even the most damaged and downtrodden can become sober and live the life of their dreams.

The only time I felt safe was when chaos was happening.

Some questions I ask:

  • Let’s tell people who don’t know anything about who you are. (03:00)
  • Why didn’t cops take you away (from your heroin addicted father)? (6:50)
  • So you were selling stuff, how did you get out of there? (8:30)
  • Did you have a healthy life with your sober mom? (9:30)
  • Were you always musically inclined? (10:13)
  • Do you know where you feel sadness in your body? (18:00)
  • Did you stay sober from your first meeting? (15:30)
  • How long did it take till your life got better? (27:45)
  • What is your day to day now with music and recovery? (35:20)
  • How do you make sense of what you’ve been through? (39:40)

I made decisions on the belief that I was broken.

Some things you’ll learn about Sirah

  • When Sirah ate raccoon and made hats from their skins (5:00)
  • How by the age of eight, she dropped out of school to take care of dad who shot dope. (6:23)
  • How she had thoughts of jumping out the window since she was ten-years-old. (9:25)
  • How Sirah always thought she was supposed to be an author. (10:30)
  • Why she is thinking of self-publishing a book of autobiographical short stories. (14:14)
  • How Sirah started using drugs at the age of eleven or twelve. (15:30)
  • How two months after moving to LA, Sirah was kidnapped, held by three men, and raped. (17:50)
  • Sirah talks about her twelve-stepping Granny. (23:50)
  • How one year into recovery, Sirah thought she was schizophrenic for her calling to make music. (31:25)
  • Sirah talks about her spiritual beliefs practices. (37:22)

The gift of trauma is really, really miraculous.