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Final Thoughts – Half a Year of Reflections

There are many reflections to think about.

My biggest thought over the last six months is crushing the stigma attached to addiction and people suffering from substance use. I’m also quite struck at the number of middle age men dying of alcohol or alcohol-related death, and suicide.

It hurts this tender heart. Life is so precious and the preservation of it necessary. Early interventions, more education around it and sooner, is needed. Too many people suffering and so much judgement that people are left inside their heads and hurt. Mental health and addiction need to be at the forefront.

I’m quite likely at the stage of being a very loud advocate, demonstrator, and rallier. It’s time.

My other reflection is that we need more human connection – not less. We need to put the phones, computers, aside, and talk with our fellow humans. We need one another. Hug more, smile more, laugh more, and be silly more. Reach out and love someone. Random strangers, friends, family, work peers – just do it.

Time is a very precious and often a ‘taken for granted’ commodity. We get stuck in the later’s, I don’t have time, too busy, etc.

Make the time.

Sometimes there isn’t a “next time” and that’s the reality. I learned that the hard way.

I’ve also learned that presence, mindfulness, and spending time creating moments and memories, as often as you can, is the key. I shudder at lying on my deathbed going, “I wish I had done this or that. We need more of…live it right now.

It is a true blessing though, even through the tough times, to know people, to help people, to love and support them, to watch them grow or not…it’s all relative. It’s human. Good and bad. You can not truly appreciate one without the other.

Make more memories not acquire more things. Love and be loved. Share.

Since 2011, Jaymie has worked with clients at Sunshine Coast Health Center, creating an environment for clients that supports their needs. Jaymie has also battled and conquered substance abuse issues of her own and understands the dynamics of what it takes to be successful, healthy and happy. In 2011 she received an Addiction’s Careworker Diploma through McMaster University and continues to pursue her education in Counselling Psychology.

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The family component fits beautifully with a holistic approach to addiction treatment and it would be incomplete without it. I found it very useful to me personally, and I know that it will help me to support Glen in his recovery in a productive way. I found the information enlightening, the skills practical, and the warm camaraderie with people who had been through the same sort of thing a great source of comfort. I find myself with a new sense of calm, and confidence in our future, that I haven’t felt in a long time. I would recommend this program to anyone with addiction in their life. In fact, Glen and I have talked about how useful it would be for most anyone, regardless of the addiction component.

- Brenda

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