NSP’s for 20

Dear readers:

I am in recovery and have been this way for many years. Although these years have been a little rocky, all in all they have been good productive years. It’s hard to measure success but it’s important to be able to realize the little things you are succeeding at is a part of your journey.

I would also like to mention the 20 years that NSP’s have been operating. Without this ground breaking work, us addicts would all be worse for ware.

In 2002 or so I entered a program in Sydney. This would be a turning point and a start of a journey for me out of the depths of drug and alcohol abuse and misery. I almost didn’t make it there because I would just run away, literally jump out of the car on the way there and back to addiction. It’s strange what you can do when you are in active addiction. Something inside me made me go there, a sense of hope I think, a chance for change, a future, a better life.

10 months on I was on my way to recovery. I learnt things I never ever imagined were possible and finally knew what I needed to do if I was to remain abstinent. I owe a great deal to the staff and my family for supporting and teaching me through those 10 months. Without them I would have failed. I found the transition back to society difficult and lost my trust in people. I ended up going back home to my family. I used a few times but it wasn’t the same. Something was not letting me go back into active addiction, I believe it was because of the tools I had learnt in the last 10 months.

After a bit of depression, I was guided into a nice program in Sydney’s South West and this was another step closer to living a happy life. I then moved into a Community Services course at TAFE and I was well and truly back on track. Recovery for me has been up and down, even when I have been abstinent it has been like this, but remaining happy is the most important thing. Normal people go through the emotions so why should I be any different.

Two years passed and I gained a Diploma of Welfare. They were good years too, making friends with people with similar interests and backgrounds. Learning the ins and outs of welfare work was great. The next thing for me was to get a job and rejoin society as a clean, sober, productive, social and law-abiding citizen. I gained employment but found it difficult so I eventually quit that job. I suffered from depression after that but never resorted to using to kill the pain. At this time I had been on a methadone program for about 2 years, which was great for me.

I wanted to get off the methadone because I didn’t like the side affects, I achieved this goal recently. Today I feel so much better, I’m full of energy and motivation and I’m doing volunteer work both with organizations and in my own time. I know that my ride has been hindered with trip falls, but there have been difficult situations where I needed help and only I could look for that help. I’m a lateral thinker and don’t get stuck down into thinking that only one thing will help someone do something. I like the idea that a person knows what they need and just has to be guided into doing it.

Well that’s my story so far and I hope that if anyone reads this story it will impact on his or her own lives in some special way. I would like to give a huge thanks to all those special people out there that work in the Welfare sector in one way or another. Especially the people who stick there heads on the chopping board, like the people who started NSP’s in Australia. You can feel proud because you are lifesavers. I’m one of those lives you have saved. Good luck and God bless.

Mark

Thursday, 23 November 2006