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Husband. Father. Grandfather. Uncle. Son. Pro Musician. Artist. Pro Driver. Mormon. And…recovering alcoholic. Now as a professional Addiction Peer Support Specialist, I share my story at ChangeOfHeart.LIFE, facilitate 12-step meetings for the LDS Addiction Recovery Program and work for Davis Behavioral Health at the Davis County Receiving Center and the DBH Residential Recovery Center.
I have been passionately involved in several successful careers throughout my life…professional musician, video production and motion graphics specialist, and CDL Driver. Throughout all these careers, one word has defined and adversely affected my professional and personal life:
My journey of addiction has been life-long and attempts at recovery have been few and fleeting. Finally (after decades of struggling) I found success in recovery through the 12-step philosophy. I took Step 12 (“…share this message with others and practice these principles in all you do.…”) and then decided that my lifetime of struggles could benefit others. Not only did I attend 12-step meetings, but I also began facilitating 12-step groups for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Addiction Recovery Program.
In June 2019, I founded A Mighty Change of Heart–Inspiration for the Addicted Soul, a blog in which I share stories of what it has been like to be a “Mormon alcoholic”. My posts always highlight addiction recovery from an LDS perspective and offer messages of hope to others who struggle with addiction.
Late in 2019, I first heard of the Davis Behavioral Health Receiving Center concept. This ground-breaking program is one of the first of its kind in the United States. With the cooperation of local law enforcement and the court system, we offer substance abuse and mental health clients who have had a “brush with the law” the opportunity to defer possible legal charges if they can complete an addiction recovery (and/or mental health treatment) program. Each client receives a customized treatment program that is tailored to their specific needs. The “front line” workers, as well as many of the medical staff and therapists in this one-of-a-kind facility, are recovering addicts and mental health peers.
I immediately recognized that I had found a new home and a career that could change not only my life but also the lives of others. The peer support concept is compelling. Surrounding addiction recovery and mental health clients with staff who could say “I’ve been where you are, and you can do this!” is truly powerful. I consider myself incredibly blessed to be associated with the Receiving Center.