Hello, my name is Donna Treadway.
My story is not unusual or unique, but it is my story. I don’t believe explaining my whole life experiences through all of the destructive events and insane decisions will be of any use to those who are suffering addictions. Back when I started partying the drugs had different names compared to today, but the alcohol content remains the same.
My life of addictions and out-of-control behavior started full force when I was eleven and came to an abrupt stop when I turned 50. I never started any sort of usage slowly. I went at it with all I could and only stopped long enough to have a baby. To tell someone they’re a drunk, junkie, and/or addict, whatever, has never meant much. To be forced into sobriety only works some of the time, but hitting rock bottom will give one a much better understanding of their problem. But it doesn’t necessarily make one admit what the problem is. I never would admit to myself or others that I had a problem, but there were many.
That is where the Lac Courte Oreilles AODA (Group Program) counseling and group meetings came into play. After my seventh DUI, I was looking at prison time and, most of all, more life lost while still not REALLY admitting my addiction and the destruction I caused to myself and all those around me. The judge ordered me to attend the group meetings through the LCO AODA Program. Of course when I’m ordered to do something I have a tendency to totally make it seem like a death sentence. Yet, this time I decided to give it a chance and actually try to get something out of it.
I now know if I hadn’t paid attention to what others said and taught me about myself, I still would not believe there were ways to overcome my denial. It was in group meetings with Jan and Jon that I learned how to recognize my triggers and how to deal with them in less destructive ways. They taught me how to admit I have a problem and trust. I might sound like a textbook, but it’s an experience I’m finally glad to say I was there for. Like I mentioned before, things or opportunities like the LCO AODA Program may not work for a lot of people who attend, but it has helped me greatly. I still use the “tools” I was given and they seem to be working! I am one year, 11 months sober. I call that a great success for me.
Thank you LCO AODA Program and Jan and Jon. My name is Donna Treadway, LCO Tribal member and I am grateful.