Everyone has their own experience when it comes to the road of recovery; detox and primary care is a very common route for people to take in order to get started. I always viewed inpatient treatment as a place to relax and learn a bit about the disease of alcoholism. My mentality and beliefs were that I would be “cured” of my addiction by just letting the body clear out of any toxins. Unfortunately, that belief did not work for me as I kept going out and drinking or getting high. For me, detox wasn’t a cure at all.
After blowing through seven different facilities I approached the intake of my eighth detox and realized I had to do things differently if I wanted a shot at staying sober. There seemed to be many aspects of recovery I needed to invest more of myself into. My inability to pull it together had taken a toll not only on my mental, physical and spiritual state but also on my family’s well-being. Detox is not always cheap, but any sort of investment can be beneficial if there is enough effort put in to make it a success. I admitted to myself that I had not put enough effort or care into recovery at any of the other treatment centers before and that if I wanted this eighth one to work, I would have to make some serious changes.
With this shift in perception, doors began to open for me and I began to receive the help that I needed. I noticed that rehab provided a lot of useful information in order to build a foundation for a sober life and I hadn’t been desperate enough to want any sort of change. Of course, for the first week or so my time was spent being taken care of through the detoxification period. During this time I was mentally in a fog, but I was eased and transitioned very comfortably into a state where I could be much more suitable to get into some work. The counselors and techs seemed to have a genuine care and compassion for the clients, and really just wanted to help us get back on our feet to live happy lives. I felt victimized by my addiction and was apprehensive to change, but the counselors had firsthand experience with overcoming addiction, which made me feel welcome. Even though I had failed the last seven attempts, the counselors’ experience, strength, and hope inspired me to build a better life for myself. In hindsight, I realized that the support and encouragement rehab provided for me not only informed me enough to come to a meaningful understanding of what it took to be free of drugs and alcohol but it had given me enough willingness to take the steps necessary to move forward in the recovery process, and into an after-care facility called New Life House. Without it, I would not have the sober life that I have today, nor the foundation necessary in building such a life upon.
Through the sobriety process, my parents had seemed wary of what I would accomplish. They were unsure if I was getting all that I needed in order to live sober. It informed me of the seriousness of the disease and how work with other recovering alcoholics was vital for change and a life sober. The level of awareness of my life and addiction I learned in rehab, had fueled me to commit to working through whatever obstacles moving forward. A lot of recovery based practices were set in motion in that primary care facility and ultimately prepared me well for a change. It was not such a shock when drastic revisions in my daily habits were presented. Rehab had been a very important first step in creating this solid foundation in which I could build on when transitioning into a sober living. It’s so clear to me now why the first 7 detoxes didn’t stick, and quite frankly I expected a cure inside of 30 days and didn’t work towards any level of real recovery. Recovery takes time, and I was to focused on a quick fix to allow the process to take place.
This last (and God-willing final) time in primary care, there was less of a feeling of being demanded to change but more of a desire to change and follow what was outlined in sober living. Because I finally took my detox as a serious first step, I was able to take that momentum into New Life House which ultimately instilled the platform I needed in my life for me to find success. The foundation was laid in detox, but the real internal work started once I got to New Life House, and the consistent effort that I put in there allowed me to become the man I am today.