I am off work today. I will be making the same 250 mile rount trip to the hospital where my daughter is. Today though, my mission is different.
Today I am going to speak to a group (usually 25 -40 people) who are participating in the partial hospitalization program (PHP). I speak about relapse prevention and early recovery. They hear from me things that their workers have said a million times…but when they hear it from somebody who has been in their shoes, some of them hear it differently.
My daughter has even attended some of my talks with me and answered their questions when I am done my speech. I don’t think of it as a speech, more of a talk…I talk with them, engage them, share with them my story. They are free to ask questions, to make comments, to share.
I get such great feedback from these patients, you can almost see the ones who are not yet ready to do the work to get better…and I think in the last two years, only one time have I had a group in which I didn’t recognize anybody from an earlier engagement (returning patient). They may not be ready, but even if they only hear ONE thing I say in the hour I talk…it was worth it.
I always explain to them…because you can see shame in their eyes, that I’d rather see them in here, than the obituaries…I’ve seen far too many of them, and it’s ever easy.
I may or may not be able to see my daughter while I am there, not sure yet…waiting to hear from her doctor. It is outside of regualr visiting hours, but manybe I could see her even if only for a few minutes.