I can look in the mirror and know that I’m doing the right thing

We all have the same types of stories. Though they might not be the same point by point, but the outcome was all the same.

I was a troubled youth, getting picked on, bullied on, which brought my self-esteem to a rock-bottom low. So the things that I found to make me happy was doing what the “cool thing” was to do—whether it was going out drinking, staying out late. “Ah drugs, I’ll do them because you all are doing them.” I started using marijuana at fourteen, just started tinkering with Ecstasy or different pain pills, barbiturates, opiates—anything to not be the person that’s standing in the back of the crowd.

After high school it started with cocaine. Then, when the cocaine started getting not really that good, here comes crack.

I actually spent my twenty-first birthday in rehab.

From there I find this great girl. I’m with her for two years, get engaged, we get married—divorced within three months. Things started leaking out inside of me that I didn’t fix. Next couple years was heroin and Xanax and Roxycontin.

You try to fight but it, it’s so deep in our bones that I feel like we don’t have that choice anymore—that it has taken us and it’s not letting go. And that’s when things from the stealing, the lying, the cheating—and most of that was towards my family—the people that cared the most about me.

I ended up at Narconon through my sister. Coming into this program, these people in here care and they talk to you like you’re a person. They helped put me on a path to see what I needed to do for myself, to give me the basic tools of how to live a life free from all these strangulations and these holds.

And when I graduated Narconon, my family and friends were up there to see me. And it was a huge deal for me.

My family is sitting in the front row and some of the women are crying already and I haven’t even said anything. And I’m holding that diploma in my hand. That diploma meant more to me than anything I got in sports, anything—my high school graduation, college. Anything.

I can look in the mirror and know that, “Okay Chuck, you’re doing the right thing. You’re getting up, you’re going to work, you’re paying your bills. You have a great family life.” All these things—I can just know, “It’s gonna be a good day. It’s gonna be a good day. You’re okay.”

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