When you think of the opioid epidemic, I'm willing to bet you don’t think their is a ground zero for such a thing. Well guess what? There is and it’s in a place called Portsmouth, Ohio, not far from the Appalachians. This very rural city of Ohio that is home to about 20,000 people is where I was scheduled to speak last week. These locations are always my favorite places to visit because I get to meet down to earth people who have a different perspective on life than most that I was surrounded by in my childhood. It’s really no secret that Californian’s tend to have a much different type of thinking than the rest of the country and instead of adopting this California way of thinking, I've chose to have an open mind and allow myself to experience many different kinds of life based on those I encounter. 

Rejoicing in Recovery, held on Thursday’s at Cornerstone church in Portsmouth, Ohio commence yearly for a larger event where they bring in a speaker like myself. Other week’s they do very similar events but on a smaller scale. They offer a meal, music, testimony’s and a place where those in recovery can be apart of something safe and beneficial to their sobriety. The majority of attendants were individuals that are currently in residential or outpatient drug/alcohol treatment. I love when I get to talk to those who are addicts like myself, it really gives me a chance to change a lot of my general messaging and make it far more personal. 

Everyone was so engaged during my speaking that when I opened up questions following my speech that we spent well over 30 minutes engaging more intimately. I really encouraged them to take advantage of this time because my insight could be a catalyst to their own recovery. It’s not that I boast in my 12 years of sobriety but it’s something I believe people should take advantage of by asking me how I got here and what I do for specific types of situations. Chances are I have been through things they are going through are about to go through at some point.  This is an area I hope that i’m able to return to and bring my story to more frequently! Thank you Rejoicing in Recovery for hosting me! 

For more information on Portsmouth regarding pill mills in the early stages of the opioid epidemic, check out this link https://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/public/2016/heroin/0918-as-too-many-know-ohio-is-an-epicenter-of-the-heroin-crisis.html

For information about Rejoicing in Recovery check out this link http://www.cumcportsmouth.com/rejoicing-in-recovery