Our "What I Wish Someone Had Told Me" series continues with special guest Derrick Jenkins. Derrick is celebrating 25 years sober this month, a tremendous accomplishment that he discuss on this episode.
Derrick enjoyed a good childhood growing up in Canton with his parents and 6 siblings. He enjoyed sports and music with his family and friends. But in his early teens, Derrick's group of friends pressured him into substance use. Alcohol led to marijuana, and eventually marijuana led to crack cocaine.
When Derrick used cocaine for the first time, he was instantly addicted. Extremely conscious about health and fitness, Derrick stayed away from smoking marijuana and drinking alcohol - but he could not stop using cocaine. Eventually, his addiction led to eyesight issues that resulted in 7 eye surgeries.
You have to hear Derrick's recovery story. His faith in God kept him alive and opened up doors and opportunities for Derrick to not only survive, but to also thrive in his new sober life. Now, he champions others through recovery as a recovery coach, counselor, motivator, etc. His voice is calming but powerful, and his message is truth.
Derrick talks about his early refusal to admit he had a problem. Later on, he rejected the idea that counseling could help him. Overcoming the stigma of counseling was difficult for him, but once he did, he realized counseling can help every person. It provided him with support and also taught him the skills he needed to cope with adversity in life and strengthen his recovery.
Derrick's message revolves around the fact that your life is worth fighting for - recovery and sobriety are worth fighting for - because you're worthy of living a happy and healthy life. Don't let your past mistakes determine your current and future worth. The only person who needs to believe you're worthy is YOU - because God already says you are.