Image shows a heartbeat like an EKG machine

Peace Among the Turmoil

My wife and I heard about Finding Hope around two years ago from a friend who also had a son struggling with addiction. At the time we were at breaking point in coping with our son’s addiction. Exhaustion, weariness, fear, anxiety, relentless turmoil.

Our son’s struggle with addiction was consuming our lives and wrecking our marriage. Our friend’s son wasn’t doing good either but she was. She had a peace about the situation. It didn’t register, but what she really had was hope.  On the outside I looked like I had it all together, I was faking being strong, I portrayed I was handling it but I wasn’t. I don’t need help; I am not the one with the addiction. I stopped with the excuses and made the decision to check out a Finding Hope meeting.  That first night at Finding Hope we heard three things: You are not alone, it’s not your fault, and there is hope. 

I can promise you, those three statements got my attention. Although on the outside, I was doing my best to be strong, I was thinking it was my fault, I felt like I was only one and I felt like the situation was hopeless.

In the meetings we heard guest speakers and experts in the field. We learned practical steps in dealing with our addict. We learned about the disease of addiction, what it does to the brain, we also heard from the residents in all stages of recovery. We got to ask the residents questions about the program and what were things that their parents did that helped or hurt their recovery process. We found out our version of “helping” our addict was possibly enabling his addiction.

Through the Finding Hope meetings my thoughts of judgement and anger towards our addict started to turn to empathy, compassion and forgiveness. Pieces of the wall around my heart started to come down. It felt good to just be talking about our situation. Like a burden was lifting. It was starting to set in; we are not alone, it’s not our fault and there is hope. 

Several months of attending meetings, we started getting some peace back, started to feel better, AND started to HOPE. We took the practical knowledge gained at the Finding Hope meetings and put it to work in our situation like using healthy boundaries with our loved one.  We wanted freedom from the turmoil of his addiction regardless of the choices of our addict. The environment of the meetings fosters vulnerability, to surrender our own way and plans of how to “fix” our addict. Through the sharing of others, we began to feel motivated to do the hard work required for healing and hope in our lives.

In September of 2019, through several God ordained situations, Nathaniel found his way into the Hope is Alive program. Today Nathaniel has over a year of sobriety and is on staff in the Wichita market living a radically changed life.

In closing, ministering to an addict and their family is messy. I know, I was in the deep end of the mess. If we didn’t have the Finding Hope meeting to turn to, I can’t imagine the turmoil our emotions would still be in. It really helped us get through some very dark days. Thank you to those leading the Finding Hope meeting and for providing a safe place for the families of those struggling with addiction, a place to truly find hope.