Meet Joey, a soon-to-be Hope Academy graduate. His story, like many of our students, doesn’t follow a linear path, but the trials and tribulations were just part of the process to getting where he is today–11 months sober and well on his way to obtaining his very own high school diploma that he earned with hard work and determination. We recently caught up with Joey to learn more about his unique experience of coming to the recovery high school. Here’s what he shared:
How did you find out about Hope Academy?
I found out about Hope Academy through Pathway to Recovery’s Peer Resource Manager, who was actually a previous student at Hope.
What is the best part of being a Hope Academy student?
For me the best part of being a Hope academy student is being able to get the support I need while finally getting my diploma.
What is the most surprising thing about Hope Academy?
The amount of time and patience the staff put towards their students to help them not only in their education, but also their sobriety.
What should people know about being a young person in recovery? What are some of the difficulties you face?
Being a person in recovery is difficult in general but for me as a young person in recovery it can at times be extremely stressful. I’ve been faced with seeing other friends I have made go to bars and be able to drink normally and know I won’t ever be able to do that successfully. Another challenge I’ve come to battle with is the feeling of giving up what I had thought growing up was supposed to be like versus what I had to make it be in order to survive and stay sober.
What is your favorite recovery slogan?
My favorite recovery slogan would honestly have to be H.A.L.T. Which stands for Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired, and for me being an emotional 20-year-old, I tend to get all of the emotions quite a bit. I like this slogan because it reminds me that sometimes when I think I want to use with no reason behind the idea, I’m usually one of those four things. But once I am able to regain myself and change one if not all of them so I’m not any of them, the desire to use slowly fades for me.
How is Hope Academy different from other schools you’ve attended?
Hope is different than my other schools for a few reasons. One, I went to two public mainstream schools where they didn’t care as much for you as an individual and weren’t as one-on-one with you and your problems. And after getting expelled then transferred to an alternative school, which happened to be a therapeutic day school, they focused more on the mental health aspect as to the sobriety, which in my case was worsened by the drugs and liquor I was using at the time.
Here’s what Joey said about where he is today:
I am now 11 months sober with the best mental and physical health I’ve had in four to five years. When I got into Hope Academy I was nervous that I would not be able to complete my high school career but with the support of them and my sober network I feel more confident then I ever did back then to finish school.
Congratulations, Joey. We are proud of you!