NITRO, W.Va. (WOWK) — West Virginia native, Jason Wickline, shared his story with 13 News, last week. Little did he know that by doing so, it would reach tens of thousands of people.
There is so many people hurting, and trapped, and don’t know what to do, and you know its like the country’s hungry for hope right now. My sponsor told to to take the time, and answer every single message. Because I may be the only person that these people ever reach out to. And if my story in anyway can help spark just enough hope for someone not to give up, then I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to do.Jason Wickline, Recovering Addict
Jason has received hundreds of messages, with people sharing their own stories of addiction and recovery. He said it has been overwhelming, but is thankful because he feels like he is helping everyone who were in similar situations.
Jason and his girlfriend are both advocates for More Than Addiction, who’s mission is to tell real stories of real people who have been impacted by drug addiction. Their goal is to shift the damaging and oftentimes demoralizing rhetoric surrounding addiction to a more humane, more complete narrative.
Jason’s narrative on the More Than Addiction website is:
What is my passion? To help others be freed from the bondage of Self.
I work with other people by sharing my experiences, and sometimes I get to watch the lights come on for them. I get to watch hope arise from them when they finally realize that they can have a new life. I sponsor a few guys in recovery and volunteer as much as I can at various treatment programs. To be able to see others transform from being bound up by selfish “what’s in it for me” motives and turn into people who genuinely care about the well being of others is absolutely the highlight of my life. That and being a full-time Dad to an amazing 9-year old boy!
While I admit that my methods in working with others can, at times, seem abrasive, that’s exactly what it took for me.
Due to several forms of abuse I experienced as a child, my entire life, I carried myself as if the world was unfair to me and I just didn’t fit anywhere. There were also feelings of worthlessness in coming from a broken home.
By the time I made it to Recovery, I literally lost everything. My family’s home, my car, custody of my child to the state for a second time and every person in my life that ever really cared for me. I lost it all. But that’s what it took.
I always tell the people in recovery that it takes what it takes, and that is different for everyone.
For me, it was losing it all.
Before, I felt people should feel sorry for me. I was abused in every way imaginable as a child…..feel sorry for me. I never had a relationship with my father….feel sorry for me. I didn’t come from a family of privilege….feel sorry for me…and the list goes on and on. Finally someone told me the blame game is over. Sit down, shut up, and listen. You’re not the center of the universe.
That opened me up. Because that is how I got handed a big slice of humble pie, and that’s exactly how I dish it out. That is my experience. That is what I have to offer.
The Big Book says “if you want what we have (sobriety) and are willing to go to ANY length to get it, then you are ready to take certain steps.” To me, that was listening to someone else who has been where I have been, lived the way I have lived, became lost in the ways I was lost, and came out of it.
The thing about this disease is that it doesn’t discriminate. It affects all walks of life from the high school star athlete to the anti-social recluse. From the top paid business person to the minimum wage fast-food worker. From lives of privilege to those poverty-stricken. It doesn’t care about any of that stuff.
I have watched a lot of people die in the past few years. People I was close to. But this disease takes what it takes…and it disease takes what it wants.
Today, though, I am freed from that bondage of self.
I have compassion for others, even though I may tell them sit down and shut up because you’re not the center of the universe!
I have regained full and sole custody of my son.
I have been employed at the same job for nearly two years.
I have a car, a home, and all of the bills are in my name and paid on time.
I have had the same cell phone number for 18 months, which may not seem like too big of a deal to you, but it is a real accomplishment for me!
I have met a most amazing woman who helps me grow and become a better me every day.
I have people in my life that not only care about me but who I wholeheartedly love and care about.
I have an amazing support group, and most importantly…
I am a child of God, a God who has loved me this whole time.
I have become so much more than addiction.
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