Here is a conversation with Jerry about his recovery process that has encompassed every phase of treatment, from residential to outpatient.
Jerry, could you please tell me how you first got connected with CRW and what your experience has been like in treatment?
I went to a detox rehabilitation and after 28 days, I was given a list of locations for long–term programs. CRW happened to be one of the choices, I got an interview by the intake department, and they accepted me to come there. I arrived sometime in June of 2019 and I was interested in recovering from heroin and cocaine, so I engaged in group activities based on life skills, anger management, and recovery. At first I didn’t really buy into what was going on in the program, it took me a while to process and get comfortable with it.
When I met my counselor Adriane Giebel (PRIDE Clinician), I had a few consultations with her and she encouraged me that she was there for me as a counselor. I trusted what she was telling me and gave her the benefit of the doubt. I did some one–on–one sessions with her and she explained the process of my treatment plan and how it was going to be worked out. We went according to a plan that I made up, my process began, and I carried out my treatment plan.
I had about seven groups a week three times a day. I shared my stories and what I went through and they gave me information on how I could fix it. So that’s what I did; I sat down, I listen, I took in information. When there was something that soon offended me, I engaged in a conversation and gave my opinion on the situation. It basically taught me how to channel my feelings out, I had some things going on that I need to discuss. I had a problem with a sharing my inner thoughts with a group of people so it told me how to do that. I was able to share my life experience with the drugs. By me sharing my thoughts with other people that have been through the same thing I’ve been through, it helped me relate to what I was going through and know that I was in the right place to get some help.
I took it day–by–day man and the outcome was beautiful. I’ve been clean going on two years and some change and I don’t have the desire to use drugs anymore. I’ve acquired employment through CRW, I’ve acquired some life skills, how to be independent, how to be responsible, and a host of other things man. I can only say a lot of great things about the place because it saved my life. I’m grateful that they accepted me in as a client and the opportunity to save my life, it gave me another chance.
You mentioned that you’ve been clean for two years, that’s a quite a long time. How long were you enrolled in the PRIDE Site residential program before you switched to Project Contact Outpatient (PCO)?
I started in the residential program in June 2018 and I’ve been in outpatient since June 2019.
What was your overall experience with Adriane?
Adriane was a perfect counselor, she always had time to talk and she always took things personally. Meaning that whatever I was going through, she would do her best to help and nine times out of ten she got everything I needed done. She just showed a lot of love and concern. Some people might be in it just for a paycheck, I think she was there purely for love of being an addiction counselor.
What about your experience with your current counselor in outpatient, Beth Deutschman (PCO Clinician)?
Beth is good person, she’s caring, she takes her job seriously, she shows love and compassion, and she tries to help you find your identity. If you’re struggling with anything, Beth will do her best to pull you in and make you understand just who you are, and what’s going on with you. She puts in the extra mile to try to open you up to share some things that you probably wouldn’t even share with anybody. She’s very punctual, she’s always on top of you her paperwork, and whatever she says she will do she just gets it done. She makes sure all the areas in the program are available to you and that certain people are doing what they need for you to make sure that everything gets done properly. And she is always responsive to my emails.
If you could give yourself two years ago some advice, or if you could give someone advice who’s just entering the program and trying to recover for the first time, what would you say to them as someone who’s been successfully recovering for a long time?
I would tell them to have patience and trust the process because that’s what I didn’t do. I wanted what I wanted when I wanted it. I didn’t believe in 12 step programs, NA programs, or none of that. So, I would tell somebody to sit down, see what the program is offering, and take what’s available to you. And stay focused and stay the course.
Apart from your recovery, what other sorts of goals are you working on right now?
Well, right now I’m working on getting my GED, getting my driving license, and becoming an electrician, so I got a few things lined up. But due to the COVID I’ve been slowed up a little bit.
Thanks so much for sharing with me. I’d like to offer this last moment just for you to say anything else that you might want to as a closing thought.
I just want to thank CRW for giving me the opportunity to come there and get my life together. And I also want to thank all the people I worked with from the kitchen up to the staff and the counselors. They got a variety of counselors in different departments, Peer Navigators, vocational, maintenance, I benefitted from everybody. I went in there and I adjusted to everybody, and I did much as I could. So I thank them for giving the opportunity to be a part of a program and to get some life skills out of there and make me a better person to move forward on the outside. Everyone doesn’t make it…when they gave us certificates, I didn’t want to be one of those people that didn’t make it. So I got a lot of gratitude for the program.