“I went through life raising kids, then, when they were all grown up, I decided to drink,” says Mike. “Alcohol ran in my family. I had the choice to pick it up or leave it and I chose to pick it up. I enjoyed the taste of it. Once I started drinking, the alcohol made all the decisions. That’s what alcohol did for me. I would leave my house and my wife never knew when I would come home.”
That didn’t sit well with her. So she called the mission. He continues, “I told my wife I am not going to go to the program but I will listen to what they have to say. I did not want to come into a 10-month program, and I did not know if a smoke free environment was for me. No alcohol, no cigarettes, ‘boy is this gonna be rough.’ I ended up staying. I stayed because I quit thinking and started listening.”
About this listening, Mike states, “Since I’ve been here, I have quit smoking. I just decided I didn’t want to. It was surprising to me how easy it was to leave the addictions behind because I loved the taste of alcohol so much. Alcohol, drugs, and smoking are a choice. I am not forced to be here, I want to be here. The rescue mission has good camaraderie, which is important; they have great staff, which is great support for everyone.
Mike describes his hopes for the future like this, “I don’t talk to my kids because they didn’t like the drunk I was. I think they are waiting to see how I do in the program. I hope to reestablish a relationship with them. After I graduate, I am going to go back to work. If I go back to driving, I will not drive alone, isolation not good and there is no one to be accountable.
“I used to hate to get up because I felt I had no reason. I have no problem getting up anymore. My wife comes to visit and she brings me everything I need. I have a strong outside support. I look forward to know that I will have things in place because it’s in God’s hands.” Thanks for your support of the mission, which allows men like Mike to start over; to start listening.