15 Years Ago
Looking back, my problem with alcohol began to truly escalate 15 years ago. I was married at the time, and I began to get careless with drinking. I began getting into trouble with the law with charges like DUIs, and it just continued from there into a whirlwind until it got so out of control that I hit rock bottom.
So I wound up moving to Florida, losing my marriage and wound up essentially living a homeless life. But by the grace of God, I was able to make my way back to Raleigh. That’s where I was able to find Healing Transitions. And that’s where I was able to start my life over again.
Early days of HT
When I first got to HT, a lot of the guys who were in the program would tell me about how great the place was. But at the time, I didn’t think it was for me. Because I thought I was different. I had so many problems and headaches in life, so I was just wallowing around in fear. I was afraid of the future. Because at the end of the day, I still knew that I had a problem with alcohol.
But as I stayed at HT, I would see guys who were just like me slowly progress through the program. I would also see guys who had completed the program and were living life on life’s terms with a home, marriage, and full-time job – and yet, they would still find the time to come pick me up and take me to meetings. These were the same people who came through the program before me and were living under bridges, had lost their families, or lost their wealth. That’s when my eyes began to open. I realized that I wanted to be able to help others in this very struggle that I was going through while having a productive life of my own. So I decided that whatever it took to make my way through this program, I would do it.
Learning about myself
As I advanced through the recovery program, I began to actually see myself having the capability to live a sober life. I knew that I had a problem, but the way I needed to treat it was by not drinking, no matter what is going on in my life. Whether I was having issues with finances, relationships, internal pain, or whatever, I cannot drink to cope with it.
At the same time, I was learning about new things about myself. I was discovering that when I stay connected with my network and helped others in their recovery, I didn’t think less of myself, which helped me not come closer to relapsing. I was discovering that the longer I help someone in their recovery – the stronger I want to stay in my own.
As I saw those around me stick with the program and be given opportunities in life, I began to lose the fear of the future that I walked into the doors with. I started to show some patience and waited for my own opportunities to open. And because I was part of such an incredible network that was dedicated to helping people like me, doors began to open. I started being given opportunities that I never thought I would have again because of my background.
I remember when I was near the end of the recovery program and looking for a job, I was basically going from business to business asking if they were hiring. One of the places I stopped in at was this well-known furniture business in Raleigh. When I initially talked to the guy who operated the place, he said they weren’t hiring, and would prefer someone with experience if they were. As I had turned to leave, he asked where I was coming from. I told him I was living in a homeless shelter. And he asked if I could start the next day. I’ve been there ever since.
Life in Recovery
Today, recovery looks wholesome. Each day that I live, I can see positive things happening for me. And every time something positive happens, I write it down and I savor the moment. Those are the things that keep me rooted, grounded, and helps me make good decisions. And as I continue to make good decisions, every day gets better and better.
Join Healing Transitions for National Recovery Month as we try to raise $150,000 to give 200 people their first month in recovery! On September 25th, we will cap off the month with a Day of Giving, where an anonymous donor has generously offered a $20,000 day-of-giving match! This means the impact of your gift on the 25th will be doubled dollar-for-dollar up to $20,000! Find out how you can help out HERE!