Real Recovery Success Story
We sat down with New Life House Alumni Mitch J. for this week’s Real Recovery Success Story!
New Life House: How old are you?
NLH: What’s your sobriety date?
NLH: Was New Life your first attempt at sobriety?
Mitch: No, I went through an outpatient and an inpatient before the house.
NLH: What was the catalyst for you coming in the house?
Mitch: I honestly didn’t want to come to the house, my parents had asked me if I wanted help and I happened to say yes. I didn’t want to be at any program, but over time I learned that I was a lot happier on the other side and that’s when I gained respect for this thing.
NLH: What were your biggest struggles in the house?
Mitch: The biggest thing was accepting that being my self was okay, I had no idea who I was until I got sober because I was always trying to be everyone else, as a result I had an identity crisis in sobriety that was resolved over time.
NLH: How has your identity evolved in sobriety?
Mitch: I have come to the awareness that I can be who ever I want to be in this life. I got the chance to restart and to become who I always dreamed that I wanted to be. It’s not a material thing but more spiritual because I looked inside and discovered who I wanted to be and that’s what I strove for. It helped having friends around me who accepted me whoever I was. I cared so much about what people thought of me before the house and now it’s not an issue at all.
NLH: In what ways did New Life House set you up for success?
Mitch: The house taught me how to do laundry. It was so simple at first, like making my bed and having a chore routine, then after that it was help with getting a job, writing a resume, assisting me and teaching me how to go out and suit up and show up, then how to be present while I was there.
NLH: Are you still in contact with the guys you went through the house with? And what is your involvement with the house like now?
Mitch: I still live with a guy I went through with the house with, I was actually even at the house today because I sponsor a guy in the house and others who have graduated the house. I visit bi-weekly and this has kept me in the loop.
NLH: Where do you work now? And what do you do?
Mitch: I work at another treatment facility as a tech, and I play music.
NLH: Did you play music before sobriety?
Mitch: Yeah, I fell out of it because getting messed up on drugs seemed way cooler at that time. In sobriety I’ve gotten to rekindle that passion and continue with it.
NLH: Are you in a band? What’s that like being in a band in sobriety?
Mitch: It’s really cool, the guys in it are actually all sober and I met them all in AA, we have been working to get an album released on the 9th. It’s so weird how I was hoping to find like minded people in AA and I found them no problem, there were so many people around me with the same passion.
NLH: I wish you luck with the album release! Are you guys going on tour or anything like that?
Mitch: No, it’s something we’re working on doing in the near future, but there are a few up-coming shows! It’s amazing how none of this music stuff would have even happened if I didn’t go through New Life. I was introduced to a few of the guys in the house, and met the others through the AA meetings we went to, even my job right now is a result of that. So it’s weird how this all happened coincidentally and none of it would be possible if I didn’t go through the house when I did.
NLH: What are you pursuing?
Mitch: I’m currently at UCLA extension to get my CAADAC and my job right now has been very helpful with that. I’m almost done, and I plan on encouraging the ones around me in recovery to pursue what they want to pursue and what they are passionate about. I want to be a conduit who inspires people in treatment to pursue their dreams.
NLH: What are your goals for this year?
Mitch: I’m just working on being better than I was last year by the end of this one.
NLH: Do you have any advice for people in recovery?
Mitch: When I was struggling my dad said this Confucius quote “the journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step” and that’s how I’ve done this thing.
Thanks for your time Mitch!