Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Profile of Change: Meet Jarad....

This week's story features Jarad, a client of the Adult Residential Program. His inspirational story is a true testament to his hard work, dedication, and willingness to surrender. It is clients like these that make our program work, as they pass along their knowledge and strength to others...

Meet Jarad...
My life was complete chaos and it was heading nowhere due to my severe drug addiction. My life was completely unmanageable. I had burned all my bridges and used and manipulated everyone that I came in contact with, unfortunately the people that I hurt the most were the people that I loved and cared for the most.

I had been using cocaine and opiates it started off innocent in the beginning and it progressed into every day use and it was too late to just stop. It fueled the way that I felt about myself. I had no self worth or inner strength, I thought to myself everyday that this is all I know and I wasn't worth anything better and I was never going to accomplish anything. After a few arrests, a year in jail and countless probation violations the community had enough with me and the judge gave me one last chance in lieu of spending up to ten years prison and that was to complete the inpatient program at Odyssey House.

I arrived at Odyssey House on May 31st 2007. I was scared and didn't know what to expect. I had a really hard time at first and didn't want to be here, I really wanted to give up on myself.

I knew when I got here that this was going to be one of the hardest things that I will ever do mostly because I felt that I wasn't ready to change, I didn't think that I could follow all the strict rules and hold myself and other people accountable for there actions. When I finally decided that I was going to follow the rules and do the work to change I realized that this is what I needed. I needed to do a lot of work towards my self esteem through talking about why I feel the way I do in therapy group. I gained a lot from all the people that I became friends with knowing that they care about me for who I am not what I have or can get.

I gained a lot from the vocational training program because I would look back at what I accomplished and know that I have a lot of talent and do amazing things if I want it bad enough. Vocational training taught me how to get up and be responsible and go to work everyday, it gave me the opportunity to work with the community and develop some people skills. It also taught me how to communicate effectively, and gave me skills I can use to make a living when I leave Odyssey.

I love what this place has given me. It has made my life so much better I am a positive person in society and have a new outlook on life and all the things that I can accomplish with all my new friends by my side, I have met so many people here that I know will keep me sober and be honest with me when I?m showing signs of relapse. My family has a huge part to play in my sobriety and I can finally be the son and the brother that I want to be."

--Jarad, 24
Salt Lake City, Utah
Odyssey House Client

Monday, April 13, 2009

A Journey of Healing....

The story for this week is an adult who graduated the program and has completely turned their life around. They now live a live drug free and are very grateful to Odyssey House. We are, as always, grateful for their willingness to share...

"A Journey of Healing"
B.M. Salt Lake City, Utah

I feared growing up and responsibility. I never saw myself being able to achieve a life of meaning. I had so much pain from my older brother telling me that I wouldn't amount to much, and drugs made me believe that. I had to develop a new image of myself and new self-confidence. This began with me being able to look people in the eyes. I hurt a lot of people and had no idea how my actions had impacted them. I can honestly say today, that I have the ability to live life on life's terms. In my past, I was never able to do that. That was a major reason for my drug use. I still have struggles today, but I know that as long as I stay sober, they will pass. I know many people that are willing to support me and that I can rely on them.

Today I am a role model. Integrity and sobriety are high on my priority list. I am also able to work through my desire to always get things when I want them - I know that I need to work for them and it is sometimes a slow process and that I need to be patient. I am so grateful that I can live this new life. Some people never get this lucky. I learned so much at Odyssey House.

22, F
Salt Lake City, Utah