Seize the Journey

Mountainside M Logo By Mountainside

After enduring a verbally abusive marriage and a murder attempt on my life, I lived on the sly, sneaking alcohol. My drinking could be compared to being on a slow, steady IV drip, not of medicine, but rather of Merlot and Chardonnay. On December 14, 2016, my life changed forever. Newly married, my loving husband confronted me as we were leaving for Kansas City to see friends before the holidays. Evidently, I was not as crafty as I thought. I had been caught sneaking alcohol a couple of times and was ratted out to him by my daughters. He sought a treatment center that would work on the whole person – physically, mentally, and spiritually.

I believe my spiritual awakening came in the early hours of December 15th while writing a note to my family and close friends explaining my absence. For the first time, I admitted to myself, my family, and my friends that I was powerless over alcohol and that my life had become unmanageable. I admitted to myself and others that I was powerless, but that did not mean helpless or hopeless.

The next morning, while in the car to a treatment center in Connecticut, we passed a church billboard declaring: Celebrate Recovery. The celebration would come after the work began.

I have my family back, as well as a supportive bonus family. Every day I am sober, I am making living amends to my daughters and to my loved ones who were affected the most by my disease and choices. My health has been restored. I was cardioverted twice before surrendering alcohol. Thankfully, I am off of blood thinners, blood pressure medications, as well as two other medications. My stomach issues have been resolved. I surrendered to win!

In this journey, I feel like Dorothy: searching, seeking to ease loneliness, overcome fear, and calm insecurities.

Home – Dorothy said, “There’s no place like home!” Mountainside provided a place I was able to call home. A place where I felt accepted for who I am, and could openly share and feel safe.

Courage – Just as the Cowardly Lion sought courage, this program demands courage. It took courage for my husband and my daughters to confront me and my disease, it took courage to come clean with family members and close friends, and it took courage to walk into Mountainside.

Heart – Just as the Tin Woodman wanted a heart, we have to want this and give our whole hearts to this program.

Brain – Just as the Scarecrow desired a brain, this program requires us to do the work, complete the Steps, and to always remember the consequences and be mindful of that first drink.

Glinda – That is all of you who encourage me. It is the voice in my head that says to alcohol…” Begone, you have no power over me.” Alcohol can’t hurt me if I don’t pick up!

From Around Campus

Hey Mountainside Alumni! Claire here from the Mountainside Admissions Department. We are sending you positivity during these strange times! I am so happy to see how we have adapted to interacting in new ways because we are truly better together. Recently the world has felt as if it has turned upside down. We are social creatures, yet, we have been isolated from one another. We all can feel the distance, but I also believe we are being given the opportunity to become more connected than ever. Stay Connected!

I am sharing this photo because our North Campus entrance is my favorite place on campus. My mind is eased every day walking down the driveway and seeing this natural beauty. We are what we surround ourselves with, and Mountainside’s campus is the perfect depiction of that – serene.


If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, Mountainside can help.
Click here or call (888) 833-4676 to speak with one of our addiction treatment experts.