First off I would like to start off by saying how grateful I am for The Last House, for all the people who have been by my side through this journey, for being given an opportunity to have a real chance at life. I spent a lot of years going in and out of treatment and jail, spent a lot of money, I put myself in to a lot of debt, I threw out relationships, opportunities to grow, all my self-respect, integrity and dignity to be able to stay high just one more day.
I remember walking into Thrive Treatment on my first day, still kicking because the detox I was at wouldn’t let me stay to finish my taper. I was in such a bad spot that anything sounded better than being back on skid row, and I was willing to do anything at that point. About a week later I figured I could probably do it on my own when I felt better, once again, and decided to leave. Due to a series of events later that night, I ended up back at East House, sitting on the front porch I was at a crossroads, I had no more options. I was to either stay on the path I was on, or I accepted spiritual and physical help. I stayed sober for about 6 months, I started giving myself the credit for where I was at with a flip phone and a minimum wage job, and when some people tried to tell me I was fucking up, I wouldn’t listen. I stayed out for a month, deep down regretting every second of it. Things got bad again and I ended up back in detox. I sat at a crossroads one more time, I knew if I went to another sober living without the structure I would not get very far, but if I came back to The Last House, I had real brothers that would help me stay put and be here for me. This was the best decision I’ve ever made.
I spent a lot of time dwelling on the past, beating myself up for starting over one more time. I made a lot of mistakes and I didn’t do everything right. But no matter what I continued to take steps forward. I learned to listen to feedback, and do my best to apply it in my daily life. I was able to go back to court and take care of multiple warrants that had been put out a few years ago. I even turned myself into jail while in the house. I learned to handle life head on. I’ve been able to show up to a job every day no matter how much it sucks, and no matter how much I don’t want to go. Since having done that I have become manager of the cafe I work at. I’ve learned to show up for my family, it is no longer a chore for me to be a part of my family. I have integrity and dignity today. I have become accountable to myself and for my actions. I know when I am wrong and I am able to admit it.
If I can say anything for the new people, stay patient. Be an example for the next person behind you, let someone else make decisions for you. Don’t think you know what’s best for you, because that literally got you here, sitting in the chair you’re in right now. Show up when you are asked to and work the steps. It certainly is not easy, but it is so simple. And if I can do this, so can you.