Most people who know me know I deal with PTS but I don’t mention that I am also an alcoholic with about 1 year of being sober, about 5 years of being pill popping free and 12 years of hard drugs. Now with that being said what does the “Outdoors” have to do with it, EVERYTHING.
When I finally kicked the hard drugs it was because I got out of my small town and into the Army (with some massive encouragement by my now wife). Most people say that the Army is what made me get clean and that is partially true but the time we spent in the field was always the best time and had the most impact on my life.
Fast forward about 6 years and I was getting out of the Army with a medical separation and all the Vicodin I could take and I was. I was given about 180 a month to “maintain” my pain without even being questioned. At this point I was either sitting in school behind a computer or coming home and sitting behind a computer playing games not doing crap with my life or even my family. I met a good friend at school Rich and he simply asked me to come out to coffee once a week with him then we started walking a bit guess where Outdoors. After getting a friendship established through our walks and coffee he helped me kick the pills.
Now one year ago, actually 357 days ago, Nikki and I were cleaning and I was cleaning the balcony where I discovered 8 empty 6 bottle packs. I asked my wife how long have these been out here and she said just this week. This totally caught me off-guard, I was sure I had my drinking under control but this was the proof that I did not. So that day I went out for a long run to think and realized while out in the woods this was what I needed for my recovery.
Just over the last few months we have made some huge changes in our lives. I left the IT field to get into Veteran support work and moved to get away from the big city. During that time I was introduced to an amazing non-profit The Herren Project. This amazing organization is given the chance to be an ambassador for them and help raise money to get others into the recovery they need and usually can’t afford. So you will see me wear the THP gear and always talking about it. But the most amazing thing is the family I have gotten through this. I few weeks back I was not doing good and was in a dark place wanting that crap back in my life. It was as simple as reaching out to my fellow THP ultra ambassadors and I got so much love, support and help to reconfirmed why we get out and do what we do.
If you can afford even a dollar I have a Crowdrise page and as a Team we are going to raise $250,000 to get others into the recovery they need.