We tried it all. Rehab after rehab, in and out of programs, outpatients, sober livings and nothing stuck. We started over and over again, but never completed one. My son began an emotional and physical spiral down to the depths of addiction at the young age of 14. He hid his pain from the world and from me, his mother. I pushed him to get help for years, what felt like every day. Like I said, we tried, he tried, I tried, but he kept finding a way out and a way back to what felt safe, hiding in obscurity, pain and secrecy. It was years of the same, and for me a Groundhog Day nightmare. Then, one day, at the age of 27, he finally told me (not me telling him) he wanted to be sober. I had never heard those words come out of his mouth in my life. He wanted it for him. He picked up the phone and called out for help and off to Los Angeles he went. I was scared, to be away from him, to have him in this new place so far away, not close enough for me to save him if he chose to do what he’s done again and again, but I was waiting for the day he would want something different and now he knows what the difference feels like for the first time in his life. I couldn’t be a more proud mother. He completed rehab and was referred to attend an aftercare program at The Last House. Almost immediately I heard a change in my son’s voice during his time there. The peer support and understanding he felt not only from other guys that became his friends, but the staff as well. It changed his outlook on everything. Finding a new family to love and rely on, who were going through this thing called recovery with him thousands of miles away from me, just made me feel secure that he was in good hands. He began sounding like a man on the phone, open and real, acquiring tools to take care of himself. I watched him transform in that year at The Last House and become the man I always knew he could be. He felt such a connection to the place and people that helped him through his early stages of recovery that he began working at their facilities. He has now joined the staff at a great outpatient facility, Thrive Treatment, in Santa Monica, California.
Watching my son now be a mentor to other men in early treatment has brought me such pride and joy, knowing he has a purpose that is bringing him fulfillment in his life is all a mother can hope for. I will be forever grateful to the team at The Last House and everyone who has helped him on his journey of recovery.