If you’ve stumbled upon this blog post, chances are you’ve either been through detox and treatment or helped send a loved one through a facility for the help they so desperately needed. That being said, I won’t waste your time trying to educate you about the basic services provided in both settings. I will, however, delineate the differences between your run-of-the-mill center, and highlight what we here at South Orange County Detox & Treatment (SOCDT) provide that differentiates us from the pack.
When I was young love was a foreign word to me. Although my parents would shelter, feed, and take care of me, there was a lack of love. I thought this was a normal thing to be happening at this age. I soon realized how other children were not experiencing this. And this would trigger anger and rage. I grew up fighting, arguing, and rebelling which turned me into a negative mess.
Fast forwarding I turned into a gang member and a violent criminal. Spending time in and out of jail, getting into unhealthy relationships and surrounding myself with very negative people. I was doing very badly with my life until I checked myself into South Orange County Detox and Treatment (SOCD) and met the Program Director, Salina Shuler. She taught me tolerance, patience, loyalty, trust, and LOVE. I have never experienced that and since being shown these things, I’ve completely turned my outlook on life around. SOCD is teaching me how to be an honest man and move forward with positivity. I am forever grateful for South Orange County Detox & Treatment.
Making a commitment is one of the hardest things for me to do, especially as an addict who is used to instant gratification. To make the commitment to live a clean and sober life means to work hard everyday and to learn how to cope with life on life’s terms. Keeping a commitment is a constant thing that takes persistence and routine for me. It may feel stressful and there can be times when I feel like giving up, but at the end of the day, making the commitment to remain sober only brings me closer to learning who I really am. Sobriety also brings me closer to my family and most importantly, brings me closer to my daughter. It is important that I make an honest commitment to myself because without applying honesty to my commitment, I wont be able to grow. Fellowshipping, getting a sponsor, and working the steps are also ways that I am going to commit to in order to help me grow. One day I know I will be able to earn my sobriety, be there for my daughter, and hopefully help another individual the way I have been shown help.
Setting goals and maintaining vision go hand in hand with one another. There is no way to accomplish goals without having a proper vision. Keeping this vision in mind allows an individual to work towards their goals. Sometimes a vision can be clouded with doubt and insecurities when faced with trouble and complications, however, it is important to have a strong grip on the vision so one doesn’t get lost in the process. If there is doubt one must remember why they have set their goals and the importance of it in order to stay on track. Having a vision of accomplishing your goal will allow a person to stay motivated and positive. One must trust in the process and envision themselves accomplishing their goals.
Vision is essential in the healing process of addiction, and in life itself. It says in the bible that without a vision, people perish. Your vision is the key to your future, it’s important to not only look ahead in life but to have a certain way of living out your life. Visualizing what you want, and going for it. Setting an example in recovery and showing others the vision you have created for yourself and living that vision out is so important in helping others. Its shows them that there is hope and that if they think about what they want their life to look like, they can set the goals to achieve that vision. I know personally when I see someone’s vision being lived out in a positive way it’s inspiring. It not only shows what you can be capable of, but also shows leadership. And leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.
To see the beauty in a life worth living through the lenses of recovery is something that comes after a thorough introspective look at oneself. In the past, not taking the time to see all parts of myself was detrimental to a sustained recovery effort. It was only with the help of a power greater than myself was I able to uncover a vision for myself where I wasn’t in complete control and my will was turned over. This freed my from the bondage of self, for I was freed from a self imposed mental prison where I could finally have a open mind and cultivate a healthy, working spiritually. I still have much to work on and discover, however I am able to see more beauty, hope and vision for a life worth living.
To me in recovery beauty is in the mental and physical transformation that happens when we properly work on emotional recovery. The transformation in a persons character and behaviors become humble and their ability to understand themselves and other addicts on a much deeper level. The humility in overcoming a rock bottom makes us grateful for life on life’s terms because they have lived a shallow empty life on their terms that didn’t work out. When we live in love for the little things in life and we become content and present with ourselves and live in the moment, we can feel the vibe of serenity in the surrender of our behavior. To me, that is the beauty of the gift of desperation that God gives addicts in recovery.
Awakening is a very fitting word for a disease such as alcoholism. Alcohol dulls the senses, and for me, my heart and soul. What I have learned here at South Orange County Detox and Treatment is that it is ok and even encouraged to awake to who I really am. What everyone, and especially Salina, has done for me is to help me awaken to my true self. By encouraging me to dig deep to be completely honest without judgement is such a gift that is given here at SOCD freely. Here they encourage me to awaken to not only physical sobriety, but more importantly, emotional sobriety. I feel that I now have the tools to awaken the true self; mother, daughter and friend. The true self is awake and sober!
Perspective is a huge part of my life. When I’m in my addiction my entire perspective and outlook on life changes entirely: my passion for doing things that I love dissipates and my point of view is dramatically negative. I get stuck in a close-minded bubble of negative energy. However, being clean and sober, my positive perspective on life increases tenfold. I start to look at the big picture and actually think positively about the future. While having a positive perspective my passion for astronomy, surfing, and music comes back. My mind opens and I see the world in bright colors. This is so important to me because it sets the foundation of my life. When I see things in a positive way, my actions are healthy and the energy is contagious.
For me, forgiveness comes from a deep understanding of someone else’s life and the contributing factors that led him or her to act out in negative ways. Personally, I put myself in my enemy’s shoes and, from there, I decide my own comfortability of forgiving that person. I ask myself how? And I ask myself why? I feel that when I put myself in someone’s shoes, it helps me have the compassion I need to forgive that person… Sometimes I may never really forget the pain that person inflicted on me (whether justified or not), but I can understand enough to find some levels of forgiveness