By Lori Hanson
Yesterday I spent the day visiting with new friends in Orange County. I met with the Orange County Chapter of WAAT (Women’s Association of Addiction Treatment www.WAAT.US) for lunch. I met people from sober living homes, eating disorder treatment facilities and drug and alcohol treatment programs. I am still astounded at the number of facilities and treatment centers that abound.
It’s great that there are so many people committed to helping and treating others. But it’s such a sad statement on life in the US of A that there is such a huge need for this. Why are so many individuals losing their way and turning to chemical addictions or addictive behaviors to survive day-to-day life?
Last Sunday I attended a ribbon cutting ceremony at Casa de las Amigas (www.CasadelasAmigas.org) in Pasadena. Doreen Garcia, the Executive Director has been a strong supporter of my efforts and I was so pleased to see this organization take the next step with their newest building. Sitting in the audience listening to Doreen, Dr. Drew Pinsky, Casa alumni and others speak moved me deeply. The gratitude of individuals who have come through the program, learned to function in life once again and have maintained their sobriety along with the number of people who were alcoholics that are now treatment providers is a strong testament to the work they are doing. So different than the world I left behind selling IT solutions!
It’s funny how the path of life leads us. I didn’t realize even a year ago that I would become involved in and feel such a part of this community in Southern California. Yet, it now feels like I’m part of the family. I’ve met so many incredible caring people committed to service to others, making a difference in people’s lives and giving back. People with the same goals I have. People who care. And I think that’s where it starts.
The numbers of people who struggle to find their place in life and end up as addicts, alcoholics, anorexic or bulimic, often don’t know they matter. They may not have anyone that cares about them — or maybe it was expressed in a way that they didn’t get the message. And sadly what these individuals are all looking for, they need to give themselves but they don’t know how. They need to love and care about themselves, they need to identify and embrace their value as a person. Fortunately this is what many of these treatment facilities and sober living homes help them with. They teach them the basics of life, how to find value in themselves and how to function in society once again.
There are many flavors and styles of treatment out there. If you need help and don’t know where to turn, give us a call. We can facilitate getting you in the right treatment program. 1-877-650-HEAL.