My name is David and I want to get real with you for a minute.
Our system is broken. I’m a classic example.
Throughout my early years in school I was made to feel “bad” because I was creative and high energy. I was reprimanded, disciplined and sent to detention because I couldn’t sit in my seat for six hours a day. In 5th grade (ten years old) I was stuck in the corner for hours at a time in a cubicle backed against the wall, isolated from the classroom.
Even though I came up with the same math answer as the teacher, I was “wrong” and given consequences because I didn’t work the problem the same way she did. (By the way, I haven't used 98% of the math in my real, adult life that I suffered through learning in those early years)
My entire early-life school years were simply preparing me to become an employee. A robot. Someone void of creativity and ideas and groomed to stand in line, be quiet and blindly take orders from a boss.
By age 12 I had little-to-no self-worth. I was insecure. I doubted myself. At times I even hated myself. My grades were my only value and when those began to slip I suddenly felt like I had no purpose in life.
Going into high school drugs and alcohol became my new best friend. They eased the anxiety of test taking and homework.
I had no social skills. I had no healthy coping skills. I didn’t know how to talk about my feelings. I felt alone.
I dropped out in 9th grade, became a teenage father and my drug and alcohol addictions took over. For the next 10 long years I went from casual user to everyday heroin addict. All the dreams and aspirations I had of growing up to be professional baseball player at 5 years old vanished like a thief in the night.
This is my story, and as grateful I am to be writing this to you today clean and sober for many years away from all drugs and alcohol and a successful business owner, husband and father….