By Jessica Mitchell
I used to be a lost soul trying to fill this “blackhole” sort of feeling inside that I had no business feeling. My life was pretty great. I had a normal childhood, my parents divorced when I was little, but were both very involved in my life. I am divorced, but friends with my ex.
At the time of my massive downward spiral I had a house, a business, 2 gifted children….life LOOKED good. Yet, I felt terrible. I was drinking on days and at times I didn’t want to be, yet I couldn't stop. Eventually I started using meth and stopped drinking. That seemed to be the answer. Wow, if that is not the mind of an addict!!
That turn of events eventually landed me in jail facing federal drug conspiracy charges. I was sitting in jail awaiting trial, losing my house, my car, my business, and still had every intention of getting out and using. That was over seven years ago and since May 17, 2013 I have been sober.
So what happened? What changed? I filled that “black hole”, found my higher spirit, grabbed on for dear life, and have never let go.
When I talk with people new to recovery, I always ask them “how are you with being bored?” I often get a strange look or wrinkled brow. “No one has ever asked me that,” is frequently the answer. Life is often boring when you are not drunk, high, or chasing the high. If you take away the chaos and don’t have a plan and strong connection to your higher power, you are going to relapse or live a miserable life struggling to be sober.
Fortunately, I chose to use my time in jail to learn. I learned everything I could about my higher power and how to productively be bored, aka content with life. This became my training ground for the life I live today.
I currently live as a missional at Community First! Village (CF!V). This is a village of people who have been chronically homeless and now live in community together. People always tell me how wonderful it is of me to serve in this community. Maybe and thanks. But this service benefits me deeply.
When I’m bored or self-pity/self-seeking starts to slip in, I can literally walk out my front door and serve someone else. What a blessing for a gratefully recovered alcoholic/addict!! I am currently trying to figure out how I can more deeply help my brothers and sisters within CF!V to achieve long term sobriety.
My hope is to start a nonprofit and partner with CF!V to bring onsite sober living, post treatment, to teach folks how to navigate the pitfalls we all face in life. We love and accept all of our neighbors where they are and our neighbors deal with trauma most of us could not imagine. For some, that pain is too much to deal with and they have no desire to work through that trauma and therefore are not ready to become sober. I respect that. However this leaves a constant temptation for the person seeking long term recovery.
My goal is to create a strong culture of sobriety at the village and to deeply support the neighbor seeking long term recovery. If you’d like to learn more about this service opportunity and how you can get involved, please contact me through this link: TreeWindSoberLivingInCommunityInfo.
Born 6/21/75 in Topeka, KS
Gratefully recovered alcoholic/addict since May 17, 2013
Mother of 2 boys, Henry & Max
Living as a missional at Community First! Village
Problem solving seeker