My name is Brandon and I am a truly grateful (still recovering) alcoholic. Before I decided that I’d had enough and check myself into The Watershed, my life had absolutely no meaning whatsoever. Well so I thought. I lived day to day, doing what I had to do, hurting the people closest to me to get my next drink. Family, friend’s, stranger’s, didn’t matter to me as long as I wasn’t able to feel what I couldn’t deal with in sobriety, as I do now. I was a coward. Four very nice treatment center’s later, I was still a liar, drunk, abusive husband and just a horrible person all-around. But I went for all the wrong reasons and I never knew what selfish meant until my final rehab. Before, I would go to please family, friends, wives, jobs and most importantly, the courts! But I never just went for myself because I wanted too. If I could make that “I” in that sentence bigger, I would make it take up the whole page! So now I have no wife, my kid’s long gone, my job fired me and I can’t have a home other than my father’s couch. I’m sure you all have heard this before but I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. I had nothing left in life but myself (which wasn’t much) and THAT’S when I came to The Watershed. Because I wanted too! I needed too! I had too! I knew if I didn’t, there was no chance in rebuilding my life and I would surely die. Call me what you want but I wasn’t ready to die; I’m too damn afraid too.
In tears I called “the shed”, told them to get me the first plane ticket out of Charlotte and send me to a place I wouldn’t like…at first… (I’ll get to that in a minute because I’m sure your head’s all had a question mark pop up). Because I couldn’t stop drinking I’m now drunk at the airport, quite of few benzos in me, and it’s my second time here. The first TSA removed me from the plane. I think I might have been to drunk. Haha. So I’m waiting on my flight still anxious as hell. Probably more scared than anything because I knew this time CHANGE was inevitable and it HAD to happen and I had to accept it for me to live. What I meant earlier about sending me to a place I wouldn’t like was me getting out of my bubble I’ve created for myself and going to a place where I wasn’t comfortable and where rules were forced with the highest priority and biggest consequences. I didn’t want a vacation because I’ve already had 4 of those. I needed stability, guidance and most of all I needed laws, that for once, I was willing to abide by. I arrived at the Texas facility at 3 a.m. standing out front with all my bags and to top it off it was raining like hell. So I’m steadily pushing that red button because I’m cold, wet, hungover and tired but I never once thought this was a mistake. And the sweetest woman came to the door to let me in and my first words were, “let’s do this damn thing. I’m ready”! No kidding! I had no reservations and had no doubts about this!
My experience at this last treatment facility (god willing) was a roller coaster of different things. I didn’t like they kept my cigarettes, had groups till 8:30 at night, couldn’t wear my favorite Gamecocks shirt because the sleeves were cut off. But then, right when I wanted to yell or flip a chair I reminded myself that my whole life was my way, I was the dictator and now I’m not. I came here for change and a new chance and new outlook on life that when I felt uncomfortable or uneasy I was exactly where I needed to be at that moment. Change sucks and I still hate it to this day but acceptance can help with anything or anyone if you let it. I went out and had a paragraph made into a poster that stays in two parts of my house. Right beside my bedroom door and a smaller one right beside my main door. It’s a passage on page 417 of the big book. It tells how acceptance is the key to sobriety and happiness in life.
Brandon L., Clean & Sober since 04/18/2015