It was either find help or commit suicide. I couldn’t continue the way I was living. I called my doctor and told him I was afraid of dying. For some unknown reason, my doctor took a risk and told me I had a serious drug and alcohol problem and that he could get me help.
I was scared because I didn’t know what kind of help he had in mind, or if I could even stop with help. I doubted it. I went into rehab and spent 32 days there. It was intense. My emotions ranged from pain, anger, fear, isolation, and emotionlessness. Once I accepted that I had substance use disorder, I became teachable.
I felt hope and acceptance for the first time in years. Hope, because people gave me a second chance in life. They loved me until I could love myself. It worked. I recently celebrated 32 years of recovery.
My passion for many years now has been to give back and be of service to those suffering with substance use disorder and help them into recovery. A few years ago, I became an addictions counselor. For the past year, I have counseled overdose survivors. I realize every day that, by the grace of God, that could have been me.
I now have the privilege of being an ambassador for the wonderful organization and movement Facing Addiction. I had a strong determination to carry the message. I lobbied on Capitol Hill a few years ago with the UNITE to Face Addiction movement. Thank God for the people in this organization, because they truly care. We are strong in numbers as we find help for those still sick and suffering with this illness.
I continue to live a happy, joyous and free life, one day at a time. You can, also. You never have to hurt yourself again. There is hope and help for you.