Erik is in it for ‘the long run’ and committed to change

Erik spent more than 10 years struggling with addiction.

Erik spent more than 10 years struggling with addiction.

After 5 months in the Mission’s Life Recovery Program, he has a relationship with God for the first time

Last year, while under the influence of drugs and alcohol, Erik decided he wanted to drive from his home in San Jose to Tijuana. “I hadn’t slept for days,” he said. “I was hearing voices. I got so tired and it was like the roads were moving.”

Erik ended up in jail in Santa Barbara. After he was released, he thought he’d try again, after more than 10 years of addiction, to get sober without help. “I ended up getting labor jobs for a few days. But then I relapsed again. I bought a six pack one day and the next day I got drunk. Then I ended up on a binge doing meth.

“After a few days of hearing voices, the trip became really bad for me to the point where I was paranoid and laying in the middle of the street.”

Erik was taken to the hospital and then released to a sober clinic. That’s where he learned of the Mission. Now, he’s getting back on his feet, working the Life Recovery Program, and restoring his life.

“From 20 to 30 is just a blur. It was just constant sadness and pain and causing pain to my loved ones, my family, my brothers and sisters.”

Now, Erik is looking forward to a new start. “The only life I’ve known is coming home from work and getting drunk … I’m tired of that lifestyle. I know I have potential.”

Erik said growing up that his family believed in God, but didn’t go to church or pray. “I’m new to reading the Bible,” he said. “But I’m getting closer to God. I’m paying more attention at church, and I wake up even looking forward to it.”

Erik is looking forward to graduating and starting a career in roofing. “I’m going to take full advantage of all the help I’m getting. I’m going to really make something of myself. I know I’m going to graduate—I’m looking at the long run.

“I’m so grateful to be here. It makes me want to push harder and to just really try.”