Six months ago I made a decision that completely changed my life. I was faced with the decision to be homeless or to enter treatment. My mom had given me a choice, and honestly at that time I let my addiction consider the choice of living on the streets. I found myself outside, praying and asking God to show me what to do. A cardinal landed near me and I knew what I had to do. I asked my mom for the phone number to The Watershed, she had already been speaking to them for days before. I had a gentleman share his experience, strength, and hope with me. He answered questions that I’m sure he laughed about; can I bring my favorite blanket? Can I bring my favorite stuffed Snoopy? How about being able to see my family?
Silly questions but this was my 7th treatment, so I had my reservations but I had nothing to lose and everything to gain. I’m blessed with being from Florida and my family drove me the 8 hours to Boynton. I walked in with my mom and felt immediately safe that I asked her to go ahead and leave, I told her that I had a job to do and I wasn’t leaving until it was done. I never had any expectation of staying a certain time frame; I was open to completing the entire program. My alcoholism through the years has showed me that 30, 60, 90 days was not going to work. It was going to take more. This was going to be a journey that had no ending.
From day one I trusted God to do His will. I consider myself blessed because I had had 2.5 years of sobriety in 2010 before and with my 4 years being in relapse mode trying to get sober again from 2013-17 I knew what worked: the fellowship of AA, my Higher Power, and getting out of my own way. I listened to the therapists and loved the staff so much because they have walked in my shoes, treated me with respect, and became my family. When they spoke of PHP and IOP I was like I’m in, nothing about my willingness ever changed. I’m lucky because I had nothing to go back to, my family was done with me, I had no job, and very little interaction with what friends I still had. So I made the Shed my family.
I look back at this journey and become tearful. The Shed saved my life and I am so grateful they were there right when God opened the door for me. I am proud of myself and I am still in awe of the miracle of recovery. The journey isn’t over; it’s just in a new chapter. I was able to move to a new home, welcome a fresh start in my career, find my faith stronger than ever, welcome so many new blessings and look around at my beautiful extended family at The Watershed with so much love and gratitude.
Again, I guess for me the 7th time was the charm. If you wonder what makes The Watershed different from my other treatments, I will tell you: I have never been to a program that offers such an extensive step down program, a program that has professionals was well as recovering addicts that offer unending support, an environment that is community based and supported, a place that listened while I cried, laughed with me, and pushed me to find my strength and realize that I’m worth sobriety.
I have said since day one that The Watershed is a gift that I wish more could find. My advice, completely trust the process! Take a break from the driver’s seat, let them drive you and direct you for a while…guess what? You will drive again when God is ready for you to and it will be a beautiful ride. Be blessed!
Blessed to be sober since 2/15/2017