David H. Alumni – Resident story

Before I arrived, I had given up. Kaput, finish end of the story.

The only real question left was not if, but when, I would drink myself into an underground box.

Interestingly enough, before friends encouraged me to see a doctor, I was perfectly healthy. This was not to be the case. Apparently, drinking has taken its toll not only spiritually and emotionally, but physically as well. Stage 4 cirrhosis of the liver, acute kidney damage, a cyst in my pancreas, susceptible to hepatic encephalopathy (ammonia brain). I arrived at the hospital for detox bloated, spitting blood, drooling on myself, not being able to hold up my own weight. This was not exactly a yearbook photo opportunity. After 4 days of detox, I woke, the doctors surprised I had survived.

Enter Pathfinders: This is when the magic began.

I came into the Pathfinders program has an open book. I was beaten, with no place to look or hide. The best decision I have made in many a moon was to put my life in their hands. And I can think of no better hands to have given of myself. I followed their advice. I followed their program. Was it easy? No. Was it hard? At times extremely challenging, but no. Was I skeptical? Sure.

I was allowed to stumble, question, scream, holler, and disagree. Pathfinders granted me the opportunity to understand and come to terms with my disease. To grow once again into the person, I believed deep inside to be. And mostly, Pathfinders allowed me to find my own way.

Am I still an alcoholic? Yes. Do I still have an addictive personality? Absolutely. But with Pathfinders guidance I have learned to reflect, to forgive, and to place in motion; skillsets, foresight, and abilities that allow me to be human. A willingness if you will, to succeed and to fail. To question, to soul search, to improve.

Am I perfect? No. Any real chance at being so? I doubt it. Am I still broken? I do not think so. Perhaps bruised…

I believe that today I am living what each one of us gets to experience. The good, the bad, the ups, and the not-so-many downs. I have found that it is in the trying that leads to my spiritual, emotional, and personal success.

At this moment I feel like any other free man. No different, no better. The point is that when someone asks how I am doing; I can honestly say that I am doing just fine.

Today,…. this part of my life, this little part, is called happiness.

Today I am sober.


David H.