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My Road to Healing and Recovery: Jason Marren’s Success Story

Three years ago I was in the darkest time of my life and it kept getting darker. I was miserable and felt like I was failing. I was wearing a mask to hide my low self-esteem and self-confidence. Financial insecurities were making me anxious and I couldn’t sleep. I felt exhausted and didn’t want to deal with life in general.  I was drinking alcohol to try and compensate, but was feeling hopeless, frustrated and like I was at the end of the line. Finally, I got on my knees and asked for God’s forgiveness. I wrote a note to say goodbye to my wife, then took a handful of medication and washed it down with more alcohol. I laid down on the sofa expecting to go to sleep and not wake up.

Then I got a text message from my wife’s daughter. She was having a medical emergency and couldn’t reach her mother and needed her. I told her what I had done and she convinced me to alert my wife to what was going on with me. Today, I believe that was God working in my life.

I ended up in the emergency room and some of that time is still blurry to me. I was admitted to the mental health unit at Meritus and then transferred to an inpatient substance use treatment program for 30 days. That is when my sobriety began and has continued for two and a half years. At rehab, I tried to be open-minded and wanted to continue moving forward.  

While I was at inpatient treatment, my wife was researching programs for follow up and found InSTEP at Brook Lane and it was the program we chose. I liked the groups at InSTEP, and my counselor. I’m glad the program offered treatment for 3 hours, 4 days a week. The educational part was a good component and the open sharing during group therapy really helped me express my emotions and feelings. I learned better coping skills to deal with problems. I am much more focused on honesty, open mindedness and willingness–you can’t make changes without them.

Today, I’m living a better life and experiencing the benefits of treatment in my relationships with others. I’m much more spiritual and have more patience. I see how God works through people and experiences in recovery. I’m aware of God’s work in my life. It feels like a 180 degree turn from when I was mentally, physically and spiritually broken. I have a feeling of purpose and passion for helping others because helping someone else helps me as well. I can’t save everybody, but I can plant seeds.

If I could share advice with someone struggling with substance use it would be: go to rehab, get as many weeks of intensive outpatient treatment as you can and then see a mental health and substance use counselor weekly for six weeks at least. Get connected to a home group with AA, get a sponsor and work through the steps. You need to be open minded and be willing to take the 90 meetings in 90 days challenge and stay focused on recovery. I did this and so can you!