Like most of us, I did not seek treatment for my addiction because my life was on a smooth path. Actually, my descent into addiction (and out) was very rocky! I had lost my career, my respect, my morals, my values, most of what I believed in, and almost, my family- the most important things in my life! All that at stake and I still couldn’t stop! I felt like I was a reasonably intelligent adult and I couldn’t get it! What was wrong with me???? I had been to treatment before and felt like a total failure!
I entered TLC on 10/22/06, shortly, I think, after it opened. The housing was gorgeous, the meals excellent and I was treated with such compassion by the volunteers and the staff- all people in recovery who have been where I was and were “doing the deal!” I did not feel like I was being judged but that they understood where I was coming from as they had all been down that road too. I felt like they truly cared! I felt I needed to be treated with “kid gloves”. What I really needed was help to accept where my life was at and how to journey out of the hole I had fallen into. ( They weren’t afraid to say it like it was either!) It has not been easy but I can say that my experience at Tallgrass was the start of my real sobriety. Meeting with staff and all the volunteers and really exploring the Big Book was the start of my recovery. After I left, I had some of the staff call to check on me. It made me feel like a person, not a number!
That was over five years ago. Today, life is still not always easy but I can deal with life “on life’s terms” and I am clean and sober. I have earned the trust of my family and friends back. I hope I have created an awareness of addiction and the hope of recovery in my community where I returned to. I can hold my head up!! We have 3 sons- one who has graduated from college, one who is in his first year of med school, and one who is a sophomore in college. I put them through hell and yet each one of them have told me, on separate occasions, how proud they are of me and the person I have become! ( I wanted them to be proud of me because I cured cancer, not stayed clean but in my world these days, it still brings tears to my eyes to hear them say that!) In recovery, I have been able to help others in their struggle with addictions-something that is important to me!
I can’t thank the crew at TLC enough for providing me with the tools to start my journey in recovery. So many people I have met on this recovery path are friends I will treasure forever! A good friend in recovery often says “Don’t give up until the miracle happens!” To anyone else beginning this journey, I say the same thing: “DON’T give up until the miracle happens!!!!!!!!- one day at a time!
Jayne P. Alumnus #22