He Never Gave Up
Michael’s story is touching. He has been at war with addiction for many years and won. It took him time and dedication, but he never gave up.
Michael did not want to continue the miserable cycle of going to jails and institutions due to his addiction, so he agreed to go to a halfway house. And that is when re his life had changed forever.
He is now living a life he didn’t think was possible. His life wasn’t always beautiful.
This Was Just the Beginning
Michael has fought the battle of addiction since he was eight years’ old. Being so young, Michael didn’t necessarily know wrong from right. He just knew he liked the feeling of alcohol and wanted more.
At a young age, Michael’s mother would give him and his seven siblings vodka and orange juice to keep them quiet so she could party with her boyfriend.
“To shut us up [him and his seven siblings] they would give us a vodka and orange juice. I wanted to go back and get another, Michael said.”
Michael looked forward to this and would encourage his siblings to go back and get more alcohol with him.
His mother would give him and his seven siblings more until she forced them to go to bed. Little did Michael know, this was just the beginning.
One year later, he went to the park with a friend and was introduced to marijuana. He has never smoked before so he thought it would be fun to give it a try. He laughed and giggled for a while and the high wore off.
However, things escalated quickly and he started huffing paint. The paint wasn’t enough and two years later, at 11 years old, he was introduced to cocaine.
Michael did not only partake in snorting cocaine, but would also ride his bike through the neighborhood and sell it to whoever he was told. One night, a tragedy happened. He was so busy selling cocaine he had forgotten to eat all day.
Doing cocaine at such a young age on an empty stomach caused him to overdose. He was throwing up violently and his brother carried him into the bathroom and said something that would scar Michael forever.
“I’m 11 years old and my brother said if you are not better by tomorrow we will drop you off in the desert.”
The thought of death didn’t scare Michael the way it should have. It was normal to him because of the way his life was growing up. He barley understood right from wrong.
I Don’t Want to Live Like This Anymore
A few years later, he decided he didn’t want to live the life he was living anymore. So at 16 Michael got a new group of friends, went to the Phoenix job core, got a job in auto-mechanics and joined the army.
Although Michael got his new group of friends his old friend alcohol stayed with him and was his constant companion. Michael had now left the army and became a surgical tech.
When he thought his addiction had stopped after he left the army he ended up drinking and doing cocaine each day so he could go to work and function. After time he lost his job because he was making mistakes. It didn’t take long for him to get a new job, but he ended up losing it after four months and his life became a routine.
“I would get off of work, take a shower, take a nap, and get up and go to the bar. Somedays I would tell myself I am not going to do this tomorrow, I am going to come home sleep and go to work.”
Despite the fact that Michael wanted to change, no matter what he did, nothing seemed to work. He has now started drinking at home, lonely and lost. He craved change so bad he tried switching up alcohol types and when the alcohol stopped giving him his desired effect he called a friend.
“The crack took away my alcohol problem but the crack also took away all my money.”
This friend of Michael’s introduced him to his new love: crack cocaine. Michael’s new love made him broke and homeless within two months. He wound end up in jail, and come up with a plan. His plan was to stay clean and become the Michael he desired to be. He was released from jail and his plan didn’t go the way he thought it would.
“I remember fighting with myself, pleading with myself, not to do this and I would be on my way thinking why are you doing this to yourself- at times crying. That’s how powerful addiction is.”
He felt pressure on the way back to his mother’s when he left jail. It was an anxiety in his chest he knew crack would take away. No matter how much he didn’t want to go back, he would. It got to the point where his mind took over and his body was just a long for the ride.
I Saved My Life
This was all too much for him to handle, and he didn’t see the point in living a miserable life he had no control over anymore. Michaels thoughts of death brought him to the psych ward.
What he thought was the end of his life was just the beginning. He was admitted into a halfway house after the hospital and was taught life skills and relapse prevention.
Michael was ready to try whatever he needed to so he could stay sober and get his life back. He is involved in a 12-Step fellowship that saved his life. He worked the steps, kept in conscious contact with a higher power of his understanding and goes to meeting whenever he can. Because of the 12-step fellowship Michael is the person he always intended in being.
“There is hope. You can learn a new way of living.”
Michaels sobriety date is Oct. 2, 2011, the day his blood work came back without methamphetamine in it, a day he will cherish forever.
“My life is better today than it ever has been.”
Thanks to his sobriety he is a faithful husband with a beautiful son and is pursuing his dream and going to school to become and addiction councilor to help save the lives of others. When Michael wakes up he is happy and grateful he does not have to search for his next fix. He believes life is full of mystery and wonder and it is the little things in life that gives him a sense of who he is.
My Life is Amazing Today
“I am amazed every single day that I am sober.”
Michael is living a life of sobriety that isn’t boring or neurotic. He is living a full life where miracles are happening daily before his eyes. His life keeps getting better in a way he never thought was possible. He believes in God and that God is doing for him what he couldn’t do for himself.
Michael is glad he went through what he went through because it made him the man he is today. He has learned so much from all he has went through and wouldn’t change it for the world. It was not easy by any means, but for him, it is worth it every day.