I grew up on a farm, was very active, and had good, caring parents who were a big part of my life. They were always there when I needed them. I played baseball ever since I was 5 years old; it also was a big part of my life. Then baseball was taken out of my life because of medical reasons.
So I started drinking alcohol then smoking pot, speed, Quaaludes, and acid, all because I had to give up sports due to the health conditions, which created a lot of free time which I filled with being around the wrong crowd. This all happened in 1974, and I felt like I lost all my goals and just gave up on what I wanted my life to be.
I started drinking then smoking pot and my bad habits just started escalating from there.
Eventually from there, I started falling away from my parents, which were a big part of my life. Then all of my new friends became the most important part of my life. I did whatever I needed to do to get the alcohol and drugs. That kept my friends and me together. I couldn’t get a good job or keep one because I didn’t show up for work like I should have.
Then I got a good job as an Electric Lineman and thought I had the world in my control. But to my surprise, 5 years later, I almost lost this job due to a drug test. When the company offered me a chance to keep my job, I had to go through a rehab and I agreed. I knew if I didn’t, I’d lose my job and my daughters.
So I decided there was more to life than drugs and user friends. In 1994 I went through rehab and I quit and was clean for the next 5 years, and relapsed in December 1999 when I messed up my back at work. I started doing drugs again, until one day my daughters sat me up in bed and slapped me in the face because I wouldn’t wake up. This all happened in January 2000. I then remembered why I quit the first time. My children meant more to me than the drugs did.
I have been clean ever since then, and I have achieved almost every goal I set for myself. I also have the same job after 22 years and love what I do.
I am writing this hoping someone may read this and realize that alcohol and drugs aren’t the way to succeed in life. Since then I have decided to try to help someone else by joining Big Brothers Big Sisters and offering my time which will be good for me and I hope my Little Brother.
Thank you for taking the time to read my story.--Bob
For more information on National Recovery Month, go to www.recoverymonth.gov.