“’God takes what the enemy meant for evil and turns it to good!’
This is a song I still listen to. It is my encouragement, hope and prayer for Josh’s continued journey. One that also gave me strength to never quit or give up no matter how bad everything got.
What started years ago finally just became too much. I needed off the roller coaster that had become a way of life with Josh’s drug and alcohol addiction. Our family was in turmoil and I was left feeling like I was all alone in this fight. One, that I now know, was really not mine but his and his alone. Marijuana & alcohol eventually led to cocaine and finally, methamphetamine. Which led to jail, in-patient hospital stays and the loss of family, friends, and a home. Which also led to frustration, anger, and a financial mess for me and a hole in my heart because I felt if I didn’t help him that meant I didn’t love him.
That’s when my brother heard from a friend of a friend about a guy who went to New Life and turned his life around. What did we have to lose?
I placed a call to New Life, they had an opening at Miracle House (a miracle indeed). Now to get Josh to agree and get him there! It was not easy and thank God for my strong mother and her husband who got him to the airport on a one-way flight to L.A. with only the clothes on his back. I don’t know if I would have had the strength to do that and of course the manipulations didn’t work on Grandma.
Life at Miracle House was tough, and Josh was forced to look at himself and who he was. Those were the times he left the house, not once but three times (talk about fear and anxiety!) But with help from Rob, Zach (house managers), Garrett (house director), and all the guys who are now like brothers, Josh would return to Miracle House. These great guys also helped me to stand firm and be strong and gave me encouragement and the words to talk to Josh and see through his manipulations. It took Josh a good six to seven months to get on-board but when he finally did, and he just kept going.
Now Josh is sixteen months clean and sober, graduated, and working a good job at a treatment center, giving back to others. It’s awesome to see him making his own way and listening to him talk about the future and his dreams. I can never talk about this without tears and a lump in my throat. His whole attitude is different. He has grown up and thinks of others first. It is truly a miracle of doors opened and the right time that saved him. And now he is working on getting back the lost relationships with family.
I thank God, my family (who I now realize were a great source of support), and Zach who was “that guy” my brother’s friend knew about.
Love to all and don’t give up. But also, don’t enable, thinking it’s love. The greatest gift we can give our children is tough love.”