“I overdosed on 5th Avenue with my son in the back of the car. It’s probably one of the most horrible things that’s happened to me and one of the biggest blessings of my life. My son got taken and I have a CPS case now, but it made me realize what I was doing to not only myself, but to my wife, my son, my daughter, and my family in general. It opened my eyes to everything.
I spent four months in jail, and then I came to Recovery Point. I have learned how to cope with different situations, and I have almost a year drug-free. I am grateful for this program.
I just want to be a good role model for my son and my daughter, be a good husband to my wife, and be a good son to my parents. I want people to be able to look at me and think, ‘I know he’s been through a bunch of stuff but look what he’s doing now.’ I know it’s gonna be several years before I get all that trust back, but I really just want to be a productive citizen.
One of the main things I’ve had pulling on my heart for several years is to work with kids from the ages of 13-18. That’s when people start going down the wrong path. I really want to be a role model to people.
It’s really tough on me, because my wife and I are going to have to live with what we did, but it can go two ways: it can be the fuel for the fire to help us continue with recovery, or the fuel for the fire to lead us back down a bad road, and it’s up to us to choose which path we want to go down.”
“When I came back from the 28-day [rehabilitation] program, I thought it would be a good idea to run for public office. I won the election for city council in Charleston.
Right after the election is when this happened with my cousin. He was one of the first cases where he allegedly gave heroin to somebody who overdosed and died from it.
When [the police] took his cell phone, they found incriminating messages between us. They tied me to what had just happened. The news blew it up, like I was trafficking drugs into Charleston. That wasn’t the case; I was a user. But the news could use me to blow this case up, since I was a public figure.
It was a regular thing for me to be on the news every couple months. It was just a circus, and I didn’t care because I was using. Everything in my life revolved around me being high. I wouldn’t go to work or spend time with my kids unless I was high. It was so miserable that I couldn’t wake up in the morning and look myself in the mirror. I hated myself for what I had become but I wasn’t able to stop.
Once I got into treatment at Recovery Point, I resigned from city council after two or three weeks. I’m coming up on fifteen months drug-free. I don’t have cravings or triggers. I don’t even think about using today—it doesn’t even cross my mind. I know all the things I’ve gained back in my life because I’m sober. And I’m still gaining things.
I’m about to become a recovery coach. I’m getting my license back. I have my children back in my life. I have a job and I’m a responsible citizen now. I can get up early and go to work. I have money in my pocket that I’m not trying to blow on drugs.
It’s just a good feeling, and the biggest thing is my children being proud of me. My relationship with them has been awesome. It’s nice to be able to buy them clothes or take them to a movie.”
“I’ve been in the madness of drugs and alcohol for the last thirteen years since my mother passed away. It seemed like after I lost my mother, that is whenever it got really bad.
I’ve made a lot of mistakes. I’ve learned how to let some of them go. It’s all a learning process. I’m still paying for a couple of my mistakes, but it’s okay. I have my freedom. I’ve come a long way.
I come from a good family. My mother and father both worked. They supported us kids. We had never done without. It’s not even like I came from an abusive family or anything like that. I couldn’t have asked for better parents. I think it was just to cover up pain when I lost my mother. Once I started the drugs, I realized, ‘Hey, all of my pain goes away.’ But it actually brings more pain further down.
I am now a graduate of HER Place and have my own apartment. I’m so blessed to find the freedom in recovery, and I have discovered happiness with 16 months drug-free.
What motivates me to stay drug-free today is my freedom and when I look back and realize how happy I am being drug-free compared to being miserable, thinking I was happy in the madness, and I wasn’t. It’s just nice to be happy with who I am today.”
“Before I took the turn into the world of drug abuse, I struggled severely with P.T.S.D. from a very traumatic childhood. At the age of 24 I started using crack cocaine which allowed me to not have to deal with my emotions. From that point on I found different drugs that kept me out of my head but left me addicted and ruthlessly doing whatever it took to get my fix.
I was raised between my biological mother, maternal grandmother, and foster care. My mother was an alcoholic/drug addict, and my father was an alcoholic/drug addict as well, but was not around for any of my childhood. I was physically, mentally, emotionally, and sexually abused until I was twelve years old until the state of West Virginia finally convinced my mother to relinquish her parental rights and I became the sole ward of the state.
I began using at the age of 24, and although I have had periods of sobriety, though few and far between, I have used substances my entire life since that age. I was arrested on December 11th, 2019, and I have been free of drugs and alcohol since.
God led my path to Recovery Point Huntington! Laying on a cold floor beside a toilet in a jail cell I prayed harder than I have ever prayed in my life for God to take care of my family and help me to get my addiction under control! When I said that prayer, and believed that God would do this for me, it was then that God really put things into motion. God spoke to the Judge and everyone involved in my case/life and gave us all the direction to seek long-term rehabilitation. I was accepted into several other rehabs, but God directed everyone to only approve me to come to my saving grace, Recovery Point Huntington.
Currently I am working in the office of Recovery Point as a Peer Mentor Supervisor which is allowing me to help others by giving back what was freely given to me. I am gaining more and more knowledge and tools that I will be able to utilize in my own personal goals of working in recovery. I am currently in the process of vying for a position with Recovery Point upon my completion of the second phase of the program. My immediate goals are to get home to my wife and children and be the Christian, man, husband, father, provider, and protector that God created me to be. My long-term goal is to finish working on my social work degree and work in the field of recovery.
Knowing that God allowed me to go through and get through everything that has happened in my life so that I can use the experiences to help others to get through similar experiences gives me the drive and motivation to keep on moving forward. Also, the fact that I have a very strong support system from my family, friends, and even legal entities in my life gives me the strength and hope for a very bright future for myself and those around me.”
Howard began his career at Recovery Point Huntington THIS week as a Program Monitor; we are very proud of the time and dedication he has put forth into bettering himself and being an example to his brothers. Howard is a true example of hope!