I am an addict; my name is Sean. My clean date is June 1st, 2021.
I have over 2 years of long term recovery. I, like many others, grew up in a normal household in a normal neighborhood. I didn’t suffer any kind of abuse or trauma. I was not neglected or in need of anything. The thing about the disease of addiction is it doesn’t discriminate. Despite any background or story the feelings are the same. In my easy suburban life, I still had feelings of not fitting in, being inadequate, struggling socially, and never felt like I belonged anywhere with any particular crowd or people in general. I felt like an outcast in society before I ever became one.
I found the escape and self-medication of substances early on in my teens. As soon as I experienced that, it became my entire way of life for close to 20 years. As the disease does, it was progressive. Very quickly the drugs of more and stronger became my only desire. The consequences became acceptable. My moral compass dissolved. Eventually seeds of recovery were planted through legal consequences, institutions, and finding myself in the places addiction took me. I still was not ready. I had to experience enough pain to want to change and unfortunately my pain tolerance had become quite high. At the end of the road, I had destroyed every relationship I had, hurt my friends and family but hurt myself the most. I like to say my bottom was whenever I stopped digging. I was homeless, experiencing overdoses, barely living at an animal level. I knew what to do and where to go I just had to get the willingness.
Today I have my family in my life supporting me, I have friends, I have restored relationships and learned how to cultivate new healthy ones. I am an active member in my twelve-step recovery program. Not only did Fellowship Recovery Community Organization save my life, but it has also given me a career as well!
I left the county I was in and came down to Broward. I went through a free state funded detox, then to treatment, the decision had been made. The real change had started, and it was cemented on a firm foundation when I transitioned into Fellowship RCO’s Recovery Residence. Life skills, communication, hygiene, community, recovery, work, all of these were now distant foreign concepts to me. I needed support and that’s exactly what I got.
Guidance, support, and most importantly a sense of community and belonging. I got involved in a twelve-step recovery program alongside living in this huge, structured recovery residence. The road opened wider and got so much smoother for me at this point. I obtained a job, got my driver’s license back, purchased a vehicle, and continued my recovery.
I work for Fellowship RCO at the Recovery Community Center as a Recovery Navigator, I have obtained multiple certificates, training, and recognition. I am currently working towards becoming a state certified recovery peer specialist. Fellowship RCO has given me so much more than a place to live and now a job. A sense of belonging, feelings of recognition, acknowledgement of my value, and most importantly a second family.