Rev. David HorstOver thirty years ago, during a failing relationship, I found marijuana. Eleven years ago I quit the pot and went to a psychologist who put me on legal prescriptions for depression.

Over the next five years he continued to increase the dosages until I couldn’t remember things. I didn’t want to be around people. I didn’t want to go out. My work suffered. It was sloppy and often incomplete. I blamed others for my own shortcomings. I was right and so were they if they agreed with me and did things my way. I thought that if they didn’t agree with me, they weren’t listening. Of course I was right and they were wrong!

I was angry at the psychologist who gave me the prescriptions, regularly increasing the dosage without spending over ten minutes a month with me. He gave me drugs that were not even related to my depression. He was a legal drug pusher because he had no interest in my recovery.

Six years ago, after leaving my eighteen year marriage, I started going to NA to quit the prescription drugs but I started using pot again. I had clean times but I didn’t stop craving. Sobriety, or clean time, is not recovery. I relapsed again and again on marijuana. I knew I was addicted, and I felt I was never going to escape. I got lots of white key tags.

Meanwhile, I watched Mike (not his real name), my brother-in-law, a good man, destroy his life. At age 38 he was a grocery store manager, married to a fine woman and had a son, a nice home and a successful life.

Five years later I was taking him to AA. He couldn’t stay sober. He had relapse after relapse. Drinking since his early teens, Mike was now forty-three years old and separated from his family. He had wrecked his truck and had no insurance because he was not working, and he had a DWI. Mike was sick and in a wheelchair from accident injuries. He was on antibiotics but still drinking. Mike was dead at forty five. AA didn’t have the solution.

Both my two brothers battled relapse after relapse before they died of alcoholism. My brother, Joe, was found unconscious and spent over three weeks in the hospital where he wasn’t expected to live. He had been drinking over forty years and his organs were shutting down. Somehow he lived.

Joe was absolutely committed to stop drinking after that. Two months later he had a little wine with dinner. Another two months and he was drinking all day into the night, staying at his club until it closed. Two months later he was found dead on the bathroom floor with a bottle in his hand.

Because I so loved and cared about these good people, I have a passion for helping both alcoholics and drug addicts find a way to recover so that they don’t end up the same way.

Two years ago I took the Avatar Belief Management course and discovered how many of my beliefs were holding me back. I learned how to change those beliefs into positive and helpful ones and my whole life improved.

My pot use almost stopped. I didn’t buy it often, but if anyone came to visit and offered it, I would still join in. I felt happy with where I was in life but I still believed I was an addict. After all, I still went to NA. I even bought a T shirt that said “ADDICTS R US”.

At the same time, I wanted to set an example for my sixteen year old daughter. I had wanted to quit the pot and prescriptions because I believe children learn from the example we set for them, and I was ashamed that my daughter saw me high.

Still smoking pot, I took a self-inventory and discovered that my work was improving. I was completing projects and my income was better. I found the courage to quit smoking pot again. I wanted to get away from my suppliers and friends who smoked and drank.

Then I took a job in North Carolina. It was an opportunity to separate myself from my friends who continued to smoke pot and drink alcohol. I felt this was a good step. Little did I know I was going to work for Dr. Suka Chapel, remodeling her home. In our phone conversations she never identified herself as Doctor Suka. She was just Suka. And I had no idea she had an alcohol recovery program.

So I went to North Carolina, knowing I could do a fine job with my years of experience in home building and remodeling. While I was working there, I shared with her how I felt physically and asked her for a supplement program to help me. I didn’t admit to her, or to myself, that I still had the desire to smoke pot. She put a food supplement package together for me which I continue to take every day.

WOW. No more craving. No more pot. I am so grateful. Now my mind is clear and my memory has improved tremendously. Most importantly, I so appreciate my life now. I enjoy the sunrise, the smells, touching, seeing and feeling and really hearing what others have to say. I have a very full and rich life.

If you need a path out of alcohol or drug addiction, take the first step. There is a way out. Take it for a better life. You must do it for yourself. Give yourself the chance for a rich, normal life with pride and respect for your recovery. I did. You can, too.

Remember, sobriety is not recovery. Sobriety leads to relapse. Recovery is for good.

Begin by listening to the DVD, The Real Cause and Solution for Alcohol Addiction and reading the book How to Quit Drinking for Good and Feel Good. This information is about all addictions – drugs, alcohol, overeating, sex, gambling, shopping, and others.

I can be reached here at ARISE Alcohol Recovery and I invite you to let us help you with your recovery. David Chapel Horst