John’s Story

I was born on August 5, 1994, at Women and Children’s Hospital to a loving, hardworking, middle-class family who tried their best to give me everything I needed as well as everything I wanted. My dad was a construction supervisor, so he was out a lot during my childhood working all the time keeping food on the table and the lights on at the home. He was my hero growing up and to be honest, he still is. My dad also struggled with Alcoholism when I was first born but having me was enough to make him put the bottle down and be there for me, my mom, and her two kids. As I got older, I started to look up to my brother and wanted to be just like him so I started to do the things he did and hang out with him and his friends. I never really fit in with my age group at school. I always wanted to be around the upperclassmen. My choices of who I decided to be around when I got to middle school are what led me to try my first substance (marijuana). When I experienced the effect it produced for me and realized that I felt like I was finally fitting in with people, I tried to use it every day. This phase lasted a couple of years and I started to go further and further into the grips of addiction which led me to multiple other substances that I had tried and juristically affected my home life, my attitude, and my schoolwork.

When I turned sixteen, I started to get into the big party phase of my addiction. I wanted to be at the center of everything and get noticed by my peers (I failed to mention that before drug use I had a problem seeing my self-worth and felt very inadequate). I ended up dropping out later on in the year because my classwork was being affected by my partying and drug use. Shortly after I dropped out of school, I started to get around all the wrong people and make terrible decisions trying to prove myself to people that I shouldn’t have been worried about to begin with. My main drug of choice at the time was methamphetamine. I was very irrational, intolerant, and delusional while using this substance but at the time I felt as if I was on top of the world. My life came to a screeching halt just after I turned eighteen. I was doing all the wrong things with all the wrong people and this led me to get a felony and spend the next six years in the court system going in and out of jails, institutions, and prisons. After catching that felony when I was eighteen, I started using heroin when I got out of jail and that’s honestly when I had finally seen what addiction was; I couldn’t think of living life without it and didn’t want to for that matter. My disease was full-blown at this point and steadily got worse throughout the years. I just couldn’t stop even when it got to the point that I wanted to and I could see that I was hurting more people than just myself.

So what led me to the path I’m on today is close to 10 years of active addiction, a term in prison, over 20 arrests, 5 overdoses, and losing anything and everyone I had ever cared about, including myself. My final run with addiction was in May of 2020. I finally decided to seek help for myself and realized that my life was spiraling out of control. I was back in jail on new felony charges again right after I finished up my last charges with the state. When I made bail, I called Recovery Point and asked for a bed (I forgot to mention that I tried getting clean once before in 2017, but I wasn’t doing it for the right reasons). I arrived at Recovery Point Huntington on June 29, 2020, and I used up until the point that I arrived. I am expected to graduate from Recovery Point on April 11, 2021, and my plans for the future are to give back to the Alcoholic who still is out there needing the hope that I have found here at Recovery Point with my peers.

I plan to continue on my path of spirituality and stay humble in my life today. I will remember where I came from and be sure to take the actions needed not to go back there. I have plans to be the son and brother God had intended for me to be all along. I want to promote positivity to the world and let people see that there is hope if you are just honest with yourself and others, open-minded enough to try something different, and willing to trust God to direct your life now and realize that without Him we are hopeless in every sense of the word. God is what gives me hope today and the look I see in people’s eyes today who care about me knowing that they are proud of me makes me want to strive for more and give someone else the same blessings that I have received. I just need to always remember when things get hard “How free do I wanna be?