unlike most addicts, i grew up on a dairy farm in an almost completely functional family...parents together from their youth to their passing....i was the black sheep. Never feeling understood, and always alone. From the time i could reach the pedals of the massey furgason i worked split shifts...Sunday only the first shift so we could attend church. Like i said, i always felt alone and the few friends i did have , were the ones willing to work with me as i brought in the calves, fed the calves and the cows. they had to help with all the chores. And working on a dairy farm was not an easy thing to do. My parents had 9 kids spread out vastly in age so bonding with any of my siblings was difficult to say the least. it turned out that the owner of the dairy next to ours was growing weed....i didn't like weed much, but it sure beat loneliness...and since he grew the weed in the back pasture, it was easy to steal. so needless to say i got more popular with the guys at school.....but it never completely eased my loneliness. That went on for about 10 years more. The weed started getting me more paranoid than high but I was hooked, until.........1984 when i was introduced to meth....whew! it was my birthday, and I went to a friend’s house. i never used the stuff before, and he dished me out a line that was my full name written in speed on an 8x10 picture frame glass. good god i felt like superman. i must have been awake for 14 days straight....partying the whole way through. i became a philosopher ....a musician .... a poet ...a genius. it was great for awhile....but then that friend moved away. i couldn’t count on him to support my new habit , so you can imagine where that led me....i did whatever i had to do to feel like superman, to feel like a musician, poet....etc ! the next 25 years or so,i went from robbing your mama to being able to sell it to keep up my own stock....oop,i got an emergency call.....to be continued...sorry !
....any way even though i learned how to get my dope for free,i had forgotten how to live or maintain anything resembling normalcy...i used at work,i used at family functions....hell, i was wired at my father’s funeral and got kicked out of my mother’s funeral.
but my turning point came up on me like a light switch. and I’m grateful for that because i know its not like that for everyone but, I was waiting to catch the chain to to state prison when my Father came to visit me...during the whole visit, he never spoke with a judging tone. he never once said "see what happens" he only encouraged me to believe that God would get me through this....and believe me, at that particular time was "NOT" willing to accept that at all...something happened after a couple of weeks in reception......i began to think about things like i never thought i could. My cellmate (although not what most would call a Christian) gave me a bible that his old cellie left behind. iv read the bible before, but it had been years..and began to read. before i get too far ahead i need to point out that just before being arrested, i had sat in the car i was living in, and prayed for God to come down of his high horse and strike me dead...just kill me i said ! and i said it loud too !
well the more i read my bible the more I prayed for god’s help...then one night it hit me like a ton of meth.....he answered my prayer....it may not have been exactly how i envisioned his answer, but it was obvious that he did answer. the situation i was in at that very time,was exactly the situation i needed to be in at that exact time....where i was, was where i had to be, in order for the person i was, to die a slow painful death, so that a new person coul emerge. the person i was meant to be. but the death of the old, and the birth of the new would be a very very difficult transition....as it turned out,i was sent to a CSATF.....(California substance abuse treatment facility) at Corcoran state prison...i immediately recognized all of this as a miracle....an answer to the prayer of death....because for one I’ve never heard of anyone going to prison for 0.05 of a gram of meth and two a 2 year program within the walls of a state prison....and finally....my father’s last and only letter to me. he told me something that I would never forget.."i hope this is what you need to turn your life around" ......5 days before I paroled I was called into the captains office and was told that my father had passed away...I’m sorry i have to stop for a minute.BRB !
okay...better now. so the day i paroled i slipped a little. i thank god that that high was not a good one. my father’s funeral was the day after i paroled so i was filled with guilt and i entered a 6 month program (residential) and it was funded by the state through sasca for completing the in prison program...the day i completed the 6 month program i went into sober living and within 2 weeks the director asked me to be the overseer at the home ..i hesitated a couple of days then accepted...after a couple of months they asked me to oversee another home they ran a couple of miles away, and a couple of months after that...the sober living manager who oversaw all three of the homes quit and they asked me to do it and i was put on the payroll, and they payed for my enrollment at caarr institute drug studies for the recovery practitioner...which brings me to the next miracle...never once in all that time did i want or even believe that i would someday be an addiction counselor. but as it turned out i was. now in general terms, i wasn’t that good at a lot of the duties of a counselor ....group meetings (i was kinda shy) and charting...(even though i ended up being the intake counselor), but i had something a lot of counselors didn't have....experience with the offender population. our program became almost solely funded by sasca and all of our residents were parolees or alternative sentencing program clients’ know you are wondering where my references to NA or AA are, well...that’s part of everyone’s recovery and i don’t like to wear out things that everyone already knows....as a Christian addict, and a Christian counselor i am bound by my oath to give all credit to him JESUS CHRIST...and yes, he used the 12 steps of NA to keep me clean.....yes...i said to "keep" me clean.... someone asked me if that because i see Jesus as my higher power do i think I’m cured ? i boldly looked them square in the eye and said " NO.....IM A SINNER AND AN ADDICT, and in Christ i am a new man....a sinner saved by his grace" ! ~Tommy
VISIT US ON FACEBOOK