Stories of Recovery A. Johnson
Updated: May 17, 2018
This is the first in a series of real stories about addiction and recovery that are near and dear to us at Huther Doyle:
My story starts when I was 6 years old and started drinking alcohol, sneaking it from my sisters and my brothers from their parties. That led to me smoking cigarettes when I was in the second grade. I cut all that out when I was a teenager, but then I picked up smoking marijuana when I was around 18. I started drinking again when I turned 21. That just progressed on and on all the way up until I was 27 and got locked up for selling drugs.
When I got out of jail I became an alcoholic. I wasn’t caring about anything. My mother died in 2013, and that’s what started me slowing my life down. I got an image of her that came to me, telling me I needed to stop or I will be the next one up there with her and I wouldn’t be with my kids. I didn’t have any hope after she passed.
I then found God thanks to my friends who were my sober support. They brought me to church and that’s when I started doing everything for myself, my kids, and my grandkids.
Now I just encourage people to do what they need to do. We play Russian Roulette with our lives, but we need to be on the right path. None of us not want to be drunks or alcoholics or slaves to drugs and alcohol.
DSS [Department of Social Services] brought me to Huther Doyle, but I came here voluntarily on my own before. Going in and out of these doors, I realized it was just time to put it down and start to be sober. Huther Doyle helped me to know it isn't good to cut corners because when you cut corners, you’re cutting corners on your life and your sobriety. Early on, I wasn’t taking it seriously, still playing Russian Roulette with alcohol. I was trying to not get caught for the drug screens, but it was always in my system. That led me going inpatient at Conifer Park. I’d never been in that setting, and that’s what really kickstarted me. I prayed to God to take all the poison out of me. I then returned to Huther Doyle and was offered hope in continuing my sobriety. I now have a healthy life and am sober.
My daughter loves me more because she doesn’t see me smoking weed or smell the alcohol or cigarettes on my breath. I am aiming for my kids to look up to me as a role model, I want them to see that if their dad does not have to do drugs, drink and smoke cigarettes, then they do not have to do it.
Being in the group rooms worked well, it showed me I wasn’t the only one in that situation. I was able to hear others going through similar things and what they were doing for their sobriety. It helped me to see that I am not alone and offered the support I needed. I have been clean since November of 2017.