Josh’s Story: Finding Purpose Though Challenging Situation

Joshua Trujillo, left, with a client. Photo by Tina Larkin/Taos News


He knew he had to get out of his deadly lifestyle; but how? All Josh Trujillo knew growing up was that drugs and alcohol were things to turn to when life got challenging.

When Josh decided to quite this lifestyle he started by limiting his drug use to just marijuana and drinking alcohol but this wasn’t having the outcome he was hoping for. He started attending 12 step meetings and found out about a place called Inside Out Recovery – a United Way of Northern New Mexico Community Partner. By this time it was his fourth time trying to leave this lifestyle behind.

Inside Out assigned Alex to be Josh’s peer counselor. As close as this got Josh to where he wanted to be, he still hung out in the same places and with the same people. This was hard to change because some of these people were his family.

Josh found himself behind bars on again and this time facing 14 years in prison. Alex, his peer counselor, refused to give up on him and Josh knew he needed to put his whole heart into staying clean and recovering. He was awarded one more chance to turn his life around to avoid prison. Josh leaned heavily on Alex to help him through difficult situations. No matter the time of day or night Alex was there to support Josh as he built himself back up.

Josh continued to attend the meetings, groups, and counseling but this time he was putting his all into recovering.

“My whole life when I was asked ‘What do you want to be when you grow up?’ I never knew. I did not think I was capable of having a career, or being a responsible, productive member of society,” Josh said. “At 30 days clean (24 years old) I was finally able to answer this question. I wanted to be a peer counselor. While many laughed or doubted me, I did not let those judgments faze me. I knew what I wanted, and was willing to do everything possible to make it a reality.”

Now Josh is starting a family and spends his days helping people kick their addictions and start new lives. He has even written songs that talk about his experiences overcoming his addictions.

Here are the songs written and performed by Josh Trujillo aka (TRU):

For more information about Inside Out Recovery, visit For information about other UWNNM Community Partners, visit