Marquette General Behavioral Health
Center for Intensive Addiction Services
Messages of Hope from Past Patients
Dear Alcohol: It has been quite a ride. You have made me feel happy when I’m sad. You have given me confidence when I feel insecure. You have made me feel pretty even when I’m not. You have made me feel special even though I have no self-esteem. I love that side of you.
It is always going to end the same, and that is why I have to leave. It doesn’t matter how good you make me feel, it is the pain the elation creates that I cannot deal with any longer.
I have to face who I am and the feelings I have; that is reality. You are only fantasy. Every time I go back to you the pain comes quicker and stronger. The brief pleasure you give me will never outweigh the pain.
My infatuation with you frees me from pain only briefly. But I am well informed that I cannot change anyone, not even you. The bad will come out every time. You will end up making me push away everyone that truly matters to me, causing me to feel anguished with guilt, shame, remorse, and overall pain and the feeling of hopelessness. I have gone back to you several times and no matter how much I wish you would change, I know now you never will and I can’t live like that.
You are poison to me; you will kill me and hurt everyone I love. You will make me lose everything that is dear to me. I hate you and never want to taste you again. Never! It is time to break free for good. You are dead to me. I will crave you and all the good but I will remember the bad that follows. I will not miss you. It is time for me to take a stand and actually live my life. I can compare you to an abusive spouse and I would have no problem walking away from that. Goodbye for Good. 41 year old female
Everyone that came through here when I was here has had so much to offer. I’ve met some wonderful people in here. So many personalities, each very special in their own way. I’ve gained so much knowledge in here. These 21 days went by so fast!! When I came here I couldn’t grasp 21 days, that seemed so long to me. I was used to minutes seeming like hours. That was my lifestyle; scheming, planning, plotting, when and where my next high was coming from. I can now say that I’m beginning to taste freedom. I enjoy living again. My brain is starting to clear up, my emotions are just starting to come back, I’m actually starting to like myself!
Just for Today
As I pick up this pen to write this poem; I need to get my gear
My deepest desire in my mind says that my day is near.
As I sit here deep in thought; caught in this web of life
With my sober thought at mind; it cuts through like a knife.
I need the blood that’s in my heart to pump into my brain
And keep this sober man in me all so much so sane
The thought of being happy, just gives my face a smile
And every time I feel that way the day slows down a while
So with this deep devotion, I really start to think
That I don’t need any drugs or surely not a drink
So every time I go there I think I’ll have a pop
Cause I know I can do that, to now tell that thought to stop
The memory of you people; that keep most things at bay
Helped me to tell myself, Just for Today.
Male – age 37
Try Not to Drink
Try not to drink, at least for today, then a week or a month or forever, I pray.
Try not to drink, for your mind and your health, for all your loved ones, your wife (spouse) and yourself.
Try not to do it, it just causes pain. It allows you to say things and do things in vain.
Try not to drink, for your heart and your soul. For the present the future and sense of control.
Try not to drink, it will just make you ill, and blind to the joy of our chosen one’s will.
Try not to do it, you might be awaken, to all of the blessings your drinking has taken.
Try not to drink, let’s not raise a toast, to the ones in your family, they matter the most.
Try not to drink, on those memorable days, so your memories are clear, not lost in the haze.
Try not to do it, it darkens your love, and makes you forget, life’s a gift from above.
Male – age 44
I know I’m just getting started and I have a ton of work to do.
I have to live one day at a time and I have to continue to work very hard on my program. My stay here was very special to me, something I will never forget!
I’ve seen and heard a whole lot of stories, some worse than others, but in the end we are all alike, we are ADDICTS.
I can’t express how wonderful my experience here has been.
I stayed super-focused the whole time I was here, not getting involved any any drama, or who was using while they were in here. I did not care, I only wanted the help, as much as I could get.
I have to say that I feel pretty damn good, right now. My only regret is that I wish I would have kept a journal because my memory is still so damn bad that I’m sure I have forgot somethings.
I suggest to the newcomers, if you want this and wanna stop using bad enough, to dive right in and try to get everything you can out of this program. Go to meetings, change your friends, start repairing the damage you have done in your life. There is hope, we just have to continually work on ourselves, on our program, for the rest of our lives.
You know, when before I came here everyone, well, the ones that cared, would say, “you can’t do this by yourself; you have to reach out for help.” I frickin hated hearing that. I thought I could do this on my own. Well, anyway, I did finally give up and here I am, 21 days later, on the right track, finally.
I am so proud of myself for completing this program. It’s the best thing I’ve done for myself in a long time.
Thank you all and I wish you the best.
Male – age 42
It’s Never Too Late
I feel your pain and guilt
But I see your want
To live and rebuild
I know the fear of reality
But if you let God in
He will soothe your anxiety
Honesty of your addiction
Gave you the courage
To change your irresponsible actions
Because of that
You will have serenity
Through the tough times
Of your dysfunctional insanity
Always remember it’s never too late
To say goodbye
To the selfish addiction
That will make you die
Female – age 29
Dear New Resident,
Today may be one of the most frightening days of your life. I know it was on my first day of treatment. The anxiety inside me was overwhelming. How could I possibly leave my home and share my darkest secrets with strangers? Strangers who had to be totally different from myself and who I feared would judge me? I cried the whole drive up here and tried to think of every possible excuse to go back home. But this was it. I had run out of excuses. My alcohol addiction had taken its toll on me and my family. I had no other option.
When I first arrived on the fifth floor, I was greeted by curious eyes. I was the new girl and I felt like bait in the shark pool, so I braced myself for the attack. But the attack never came. Everyone was warm and welcoming. They were eager to hear my story and share theirs with me. My first week was very emotional but my peers knew that was part of the program and were right there to offer tissues and comforting words. Soon friendships formed and the days weren’t so bad. I could open up for the first time with people who knew how I felt. I had counselors who would listen to me and cared about my stay here, as well as my after care when I went home. I began to realize being sober wasn’t that bad and I could actually laugh and be okay with myself. I was just another person living with a disease.
The biggest advice I can give you is please take treatment seriously. This is a huge gift and you are so lucky to be one of the few to be here. There are so many others who would only wish to be in your place but don’t have the opportunity. Let your guard down, open up, and most importantly, listen. It changed my life and it can change yours too.
Female – age 28
The demons were getting louder
The urges getting strong,
So you made a decision
And invited God along.
You left your past comforts
Your own living hell,
And came to a place for answers
A place to make you well.
The days at first were lonely
And full of endless tears,
They you found honesty
And friends to ease your fears.
Acceptance became the pathway
And surrender part of the fight,
And even in your darkest hour
God will be your light
Your road will not be easy
The journey won’t be swift
Just keep that medal by your side
And enjoy this precious gift.