A Quick Six Months

Tomorrow my friend graduates from the rehab program he entered six months ago. Half a year has passed a lot faster than either of us expected. Time flies.

If you’re looking for a good rehab facility, I highly recommend Bridges of Hope. Six months ago, I was skeptical. They don’t accept insurance, employ no professionals, and charge only $800 a month. I felt a little better after a trip down to check out the place, but still had my concerns.

The program relies on a structured environment and the 12 Steps of AA/NA. Residents work four to six hours a day on one of several crews that carry out all the essential functions, such as cooking, cleaning, and maintaining the grounds. The punishment for violating the dress code or other rules is copying the relevant portion of the rulebook or the Big Book of AA a prescribed number of times.

Residents participate in three meetings a day. Without access to phones, computers, televisions, or radios, the residents talk to each other. Going along without buying in is possible, but after a while, it’s easier to just drink the Kool-Aid.

Over time, residents earn privileges such as freedom from some rules and trips off of the property. After 30 days, they’re allowed visitors (only on Sundays during certain hours). After 90 days, they get a four-day pass each month (Thursday to 5:00 pm Sunday). Sounds a bit loosy-goosy, but it works.

After a month or so on the kitchen crew, my friend became the kitchen crew leader, and for the last month, has been in charge of all the crew leaders. He’s made the most of the opportunity, and I couldn’t be more proud of him.

What’s next? I have no idea. He doesn’t know either. There are too many unknowns to hazard a guess. Getting back on his feet again will take time. How long is anyone’s guess. Until the dust settles, he’s staying at my house. He had other options, but in the end, staying with me made the most sense.

A long time ago, I was down on my luck with no place to go. My parents wouldn’t let me move back home — thank God. Talk about a bad idea, but of course, that realization came years later. Anyway, like she’d done so many times before, my Aunt Toodles came to my rescue and let me move into her one-bedroom apartment with her.

What goes around, comes around. Aunt Toodles never asked me for a dime. Now it’s time to pay her back…

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2 responses to “A Quick Six Months”

  1. Your friend has accomplished a feat more than many could master.
    He will never again doubt his own strength of character or determined persistence.
    Sincere wishes that this success empowers him to create a life he loves and that he will find joy.
    I believe Toodles is glowing and smiling from somewhere above this world.
    Her magic and goodness live on through you, Michael.