Posts Tagged ‘rehabilitation’

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This is a little personal. I wrote this to myself the day before I admitted myself into a 6 month program at the Salvation Army rehabilitation center. I gave it to my brother and told him to give it to me when I got out.
I was suicidal. I was at my rock bottom. I had no hope and I had not an ounce of faith left. I am sharing it now because it is not only a reminder of where opiate abuse left me, but maybe someone will read this and will be able to relate. I’m not even sure why I wrote it, maybe after almost 10 years of running around like a rampant junkie, I finally wanted help. Maybe I knew I was finally ready? Because if it wasn’t then, if I didn’t get help, I knew I couldn’t go on any longer. Even breathing was painful. I was done.
By sharing this I’m hoping maybe someone can relate and find a bit of solitude or enough energy to get up and get help too… It may not make much sense but It sure did 4 years ago.

“You’re back, congrats for making 6 months of sobriety. DO NOT let it get to your head. You wrote this withdrawing, sick, diarrhea, confused, afraid, helpless, down, pissed off, ALONE. You did this all to yourself. All to yourself. You want this all back? Start sniffing those f****** percs up your nose. Go ahead, your life will go right back into a hole again, a lifeless, useless, lonely f****** hole.
You want to keep your life? Stick to Christ, family and surround yourself with encouraging people. Stay busy. Love what you have because what you have right now is so precious. Trust me, I wrote this. I AM YOU.
Just a reminder of how you felt the day before rehab… sick, food will not digest, cold sweats, hot flashes, diarrhea, INSOMNIA, headaches, heartburn, nausea, blurred vision, quivers, skeletal and joint pain.
Here are the pains, repercussions of life around you… You feel mentally inadequate, alone, afraid, people will not trust you. You hurt your beautiful mother, your brothers, your father (who will never understand you, but hey, love you for you, and love him for him.) You lied, stole and cheated. You have come so close to going to jail, so many times God intervened.
You became a bum. A junky, a loser. You are so fortunate to be alive, to be reading this, a free, rehabilitated man.
Remember that 6 month journey. Keep your head up! Put this behind you. Stay strong. Help those in need.

Find what you love to do AND DO IT!

Love,
Yourself

P.S. DON’T F*** UP MICHAEL.”

I’m not too sure what pushed me to write this back then. I’m glad I did though. I read it once in a while and I reflect on where I was and what life was like being an addict. It’s like a book mark. When I see it, it puts me right back where I used to be for a short time. It helps me be grateful for everything I have. It helps me stay humble. It helps me remain teachable. I don’t ever want to go back to that lifestyle ever again. I can’t. I know it will destroy me. It will kill me.
I thank my heavenly Father above for the strength to keep moving forward each and every day. I hope this helps someone in one way or another.

God Bless you

Become Free. Become the Difference!

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You have probably heard this before, in movies or even from your friends who think they are ‘too tough’ for rehab. Or you may have heard this used as an innuendo for people ‘giving up’.

Well, rehab IS for quitters. People who want to quit their addiction. People who have given up living their reckless life. People who have chosen to do something about their substance abuse problem. Unfortunately, many rehab beneficiaries are stipulated to complete programs like this as a result of a judgment from drug court. It’s good and not so good. Good that they have an opportunity to learn and get better; not so good because they are forced there and many times they are not ready for any improvement.

But there are the few who show up at a rehabilitation center seeking help. The ones who are all out of gas and need a tow. The ones who have given up, shut up and humbled themselves to be open for teaching and open to new behavioral changes.

I was sick as a dog my first day at rehab. I went to a Salvation Army, Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC). And as good as I felt knowing and hoping I was going to get better, my body was not agreeing with me. I had stopped cold turkey off lots of opiates and only an addict knows what that is like, I need not explain!

The ARC is a Christian ‘working’ program. You have to work 40 hrs a week in the warehouse and you got a gratuity starting at a few bucks your first week. This program brought work ethic and money management back into my life, one of the many things you learn here. It was difficult the first 3-4 weeks. My body was withdrawing intensely off the drugs I was abusing for the past 10 years. But I eventually started to gain my strength back and learned why I did what I did for so long.

After working eight hours in the warehouse, they would feed us with very good sized, fatten me up, portions of food. They feed you very well! And after a short break to get cleaned up, it’s learning time.

The Salvation Army hosted great lectures, meetings and one-on-one’s with counselors that are extremely beneficial. Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meetings were held a few times a week. It was so good to hear others talk about their issues as well as being surrounded by people of a common bond.

Most importantly, I got a chance to refine my spirit and being a Christian program, there were many chances to do so. I saw myself changing. I also saw many others changing too. We were given spiritual principles to live by, to learn from and to use for the rest of our lives. I learned so much about myself and why I did what I did. It was a great time for me. Me and another guy who I made friends with called it a ‘Spiritual Retreat’!

So in conclusion, you would think I lived happily ever after and it’s been smooth sailing, right? Wrong, I relapsed after 10 months and readmitted myself for another round. I actually completed the program twice, in the same year! (See Photo Above)

Again, I had a lot to learn! And it is possible to have fun while you learn. It was an experience I will NEVER forget. I have made many friends with whom I still keep in touch with. I also still keep in touch with many of the counselors as well.

I am, to this day, extremely grateful for the Salvation Army basically saving my life and grateful for the ones who shared their wisdom and insight and guided me along my journey.

If you are struggling and have no where to turn to, I encourage you to seek help, whether it be a detox, a rehab, or where ever you can go to receive help with your addiction. There are resources all around us, it’s up to you to make a choice.

Keep God first and He will use WHEREVER you are to help you make a difference in your life!

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

You have a purpose… Become Free! Become the Difference!