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Last House Graduate: Will Van Zandt

I am not sure how to express the shift in perspective I have had while staying here, but I will give it a shot. I have been to hell and back ten times over the time I arrived at The Last House. I came in broke and broken, confused, empty, and with nothing left to give. My 70-year-old mom dropped me off with a week’s worth of clothes, my care, and personal effects were scattered from Pasadena to Arizona. I weighed 150 pounds with 11 staples in my head and my front tooth gone with no recollection as to how or why it happened. As I got out of the car my mother looked at me and said “not that you have much-left son, but what is remaining I would think about because I can’t afford to care anymore, please do not call.” That was the day my life had turned into yet another introspective journey as to how fucked up my life was once again. I was forced to sit with that. Regardless of how capable and disciplined I thought myself to be. Here I was, along with Jonas, Ryan, and Diego steering the ship I knew choppy waters were not far ahead. Then Dustin came in and just when I thought my life couldn’t get any worse, there was a guy who couldn’t leave! I could!! Meeting another like mindedindividual-who was violent by design and courteous by choice, I thought to myself this relationship is going to go one of two ways. We were either gonna fight or assimilate. We have not fought… yet. So there we were in the dish pit, cooking, cleaning, and striking. Many moons passed and the routine became non-negotiable, the consistency more frequent. I, we, all of us, faced with the opportunity to dig deep and get honest or comply and fly by had a choice to make, I got BUSY! I sat across from my sponsor and evaluated my character and assessed my conduct, we went over causes and conditions with a thorough inventory, I discarded what caused turmoil, and tailored my actions to helping others to help myself. I shut my mouth and listened to others’ perspectives. I voiced my concerns, I chose the gym over the couch, and I chose work over pleasure. I soon began to realize what I had neatly avoided over the 15 years of trying to get sober was the one thing that kept me disconnected. My intolerance and judgment of others and my immense concern for myself I had. I want what I wanted in life and went to any lengths to get it, with little to no regard for others and no remorse for what they had to endure. I was not much but I was all I thought about. If you were to ask me what I do today to maintain sobriety and mental stability, I would tell you it is not what I do as much as what I don’t do!. It is beyond wordswhat has happened in my stay here- simply put, I let go of the wheel, I let others do for me what I failed to do myself. In the 16 years, I attempted getting sober I can say today that my only strength comes through restraint. – Will Van Zandt

“The answers will come if my own house is in order”

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