My Proudest Accomplishment
I was born and raised in Lancaster, California. Before I started doing drugs, my life was great, I never had any particular hardships. I had great parents and a great family. I did not have an excuse for why I started using drugs, but I was able to figure it out while I went through the Narconon program. This is something that can happen to anybody. You start hanging out with the wrong people, and there is no one really to blame for it.
There is a lot to recall about happy moments in my life before drugs, but I can safely say that anytime I spent with my family when everybody got together, every week everybody would come over for Sunday dinner, those were happy moments for me. I remember the times I would play in the garden with my family—any type of activity with my family was great when I was a kid. It was ruined when I started doing drugs.
I started with using oxycodone when I was in Junior High School at 16 years old. Then I continued using oxycodone through Senior High School when I was 17 years old. About halfway through that, I started using heroin, till about 19, and then meth started. I was shooting up both heroin and meth and that’s where my entire life started going downhill and took a really bad turn.
I was really addicted to heroin and I would then use meth to not nod out and not be asleep all day so that I would still be able to function.
My drug use was detrimental to my family, it broke my family up for a long time. No one would come over as I lived at home, and when my family did come over I was never there. There was no family interaction. There were certain things I valued but when you are on drugs those things do not matter at all. There is a point where you think you are doing well and feel well but when you hit the point where you realize you no longer want to lie to your parents every single day, which goes completely against your morals, then you feel like a bad person. This is how I felt as I got really good at lying. I also thought I would never be someone who would steal, but I was stealing every day. It goes against all morals and then you realize that something needs to happen and that’s the time to get help.
My mom was already getting very suspicious about my drug use. She had already talked to me about going to rehab and I had lied and said I was not using drugs. At that point, she dropped it as she is a mother and she did not want to believe her son was addicted to heroin. I got away with that for a week or two. Until one day I went to the bathroom and shot up, my little sister went to the bathroom after me and she saw a syringe. She then immediately went to my mom and that’s when my mom got in contact with Narconon.
It was my little sister who immediately realized what was going on and decided she would not let that continue. At that point, an intervention was done on me.
The Narconon program is not easy. But going through that is so much better because you really learn what to do and how to fix things by using condition formulas when you face certain situations, you learn tools to be able to live. I don’t call what happened to me a bad thing, because coming out of the Narconon program, I have way more sense of direction than I used to have. It was a learning experience, that’s how I call it, rather than beating myself up for what happened. Through Narconon, you realize the values in life and what you want to do and how to achieve your goals.
Before coming to Narconon, I had not done the research myself, my mom obviously did it and organized an intervention. I am not going to lie, I was a little skeptical when I found out it was completely drug-free. But that turned out to be the best part, as one of the reasons I have no desire to go back on drugs anymore, is that I would never want to live the pain and hell I went through when I was withdrawing from them. Why would I want to go through that again? If I had gone through a rehab where they gave me methadone and not done the hard work of recovery then it’s likely I would run into some bad times and not know how to cope, I would then still use drugs.
When I arrived at Narconon, the staff I met were really nice, and they dealt with me throughout the whole program. I also know about biology and science so when I got to do the sauna detoxification, the concept of how it worked resonated with me very well. Then I got to a point where I was having a rough time and what made me stay till the end, was that the staff was fighting for me. If I would have left in the middle of the program, I don’t know where I would be today, most likely back to the life I was living while I was using drugs.
One of my biggest wins was withdrawal, when I weighed the pros and cons and realized that yes you can get high and feel really good, but the con is you will have to go through this withdrawal pain again. I would never do that “pro” ever again in my life because of that damn side of it.
Another big win I had was on Objectives. Once you open your mind up to Objectives you don’t look at it like “I am just touching a wall” or “just doing this or that” if you look at it with an outward perspective and try to relate it to experiences you can run into, you get the point of Objectives.
My other win would definitely be the life skills phase. Just looking at all the bad things I have done that go against my morals. Like stealing from my family, which is something I would never do but that I did do, and looking at the number of things that happened during the drug phase. You betray your own morals, you don’t care when you are addicted, it just does not matter to you.
Graduation was a really awesome day for me. I got to see the new people as well as other people graduating at the same time as me. The graduation process is super amazing. I have met some of the greatest people I have ever talked to. And they are amazing people even though they were in a bad situation like I had been. My mom was there encouraging me and the vibe you get from it is that you are never going back to drugs. The loved ones around you and the staff will never stop fighting for you. There is always an end goal and the staff might be tough with you but it is for your good.
As for my life right now, I am working in construction, and I am working on getting my engineering degree in aerospace. The job I am doing is teaching me a lot of new skills I can use in life so this is helping me grow and become stronger for my future.
I would say my proudest accomplishment since graduating is having regained trust with my family. This has been my greatest accomplishment.
The relationship with my family is amazing now. They come over on Sunday now. They did not use to visit when I was on drugs. Now I also get to see my nephew and nieces that I did not get to see before.
Also, my favorite thing about being drug-free is being able to be with my family and not be restricted by anything. Freedom and family are my favorite things now. I can do anything I want and don’t have to be worried about “oh do I have to bring 1 or 2 grams with me in case I am going to be sick?” I knew I was messing up but could not get out of it and now it is like I can do things and I can chill with my family and I can have relaxing days which is the best thing for me.
What I would advise to those in active addiction now, is if you can find a little glimpse in your soul where you don’t want to go through this stuff anymore, and hopefully, you have a support system that can help you, just push through and get some help because doing it on your own does not work. If you have help and a decent family and friends, if you have a little bit of “this is bad and I don’t want to do it anymore” that’s all you need. If you have a bit of that. You will make it, that’s all you need.
To those in early recovery I would say, keep pushing, I know it is hard. I went through it. The way out is the way through. Don’t back out or try to cheat and stall, just push through. Everybody who is there on staff at Narconon is there to help. If you need help ask for help, people are there to help you. Apply yourself and do it.