Hi. My name is Jamie. I recently completed 12 months in the program and was given the opportunity to stay on as an Intern which I have now been for 3 months.
I am originally from Bundaberg, Queensland. I come from a Christian family of 15 Kids, all adopted. I had a great childhood, even though I was a very hyperactive child and constantly getting in trouble, my adopted parents always loved on me and gave me all the support I needed.
My teenage years were pretty typical, playing lots of sport and getting a local job at McDonalds. Although I did go through several high schools due to my hyperactive nature. I was always the rebellious kid at School as well as at home, and I never really felt like I belonged or that I was good enough to be wanted. Whenever I got in trouble by my father, I would always end in Hysterics about how he doesn’t love me. I recently learned that this behaviour was probably because of my years before I went into the Foster home.
When I was in grade 12 I was introduced to marijuana. I started skipping classes with my mates and going back to their house. After a couple of years of this behaviour and still working I was demoted at the Local McDonalds. It was at this point I knew something needed to be done.
I went on a trip for 2 weeks for young men who struggled in addictions. This did not do anything for me. The first thing I did when I got back was get straight back on it.
After a year I successfully quit my addiction. I did really well and lasted 2 years without going back to it. I then got a job with a local telecommunications company, Network Communications. I made some new friends who weren’t into smoking etc. I was earning relatively good money and I wasn’t smoking drugs so I thought my life was good. Little did I know that my most destructive season was about to start.
I started drinking with these new mates quite heavily. One night they all decided they wanted to smoke some weed, I pleaded to them not to. I knew that even if I had one taste I would soon be addicted again. But I was the only one that could make the contraption or score the weed for them.
They did not understand what level my addiction had reached previously and convinced me that they wouldn’t allow me to get to that point again.
Within a month I was back smoking it every day and night. It was about this stage that I was told by my Mother why I was put into adoption. It was due to physical and sexual abuse by my Birth Mothers boyfriend. This sent me into a spiral of depression. 6 years later, most of my friendships broke down due to my paranoia because I never really dealt with any of my issues. My womanising problem was also getting worse.
I was given an opportunity by my employers to attend a life training centre by the name of ONE80TC. I didn’t think I had to many issues because I was still doing really well at my job. I was earning and saving lots of money and I wasn’t doing crime to pay for my addiction, so I thought I would spend a maximum of 6 months in the program and get back to my job.
Whilst in the program I was broken to a point where everything I thought that was, was no longer. I was told I needed to get rid of my old stubborn ways and start relying on God. In about my 5th week in the program, I gave my Life to the Lord.
My journey in the program was a hard one and I needed to address many issues if I wanted to have any breakthrough and “become a gentleman” as my caseworker Matthias puts it.
I was a bad womaniser and thought that I was only loved if I had several women after me. I had major trust issues and treated every relationship as though they were definitely going to give up on me sooner than later.
I found it hard to take correction from people, because I thought correction was rejection and that they loved me less by doing so. To top it off, because I was so insecure and depressed about who I was, in a joking way I would always put down other people and would have this arrogant mask that I portrayed to everyone else.
I started seeing a psychologist in the program who challenged me on my thought patterns and teaching me ways to combat this. I also did many contracts as well as reading books such as “Me and My Big Mouth”. I always fought doing these contracts as they were really challenging, but as I gave into them, it started making a lot of sense and I found myself enjoying them.
During my journey in the program I had many things on the outside that could have quite easily pulled me out of the program but I kept learning to just trust in God and my caseworker Matthias and knew that if I didn’t give it proper time here, I would end up back in my old habits.
At the end of my time in the program I was unsure as to whether I was going to stay and do the internship or go back home to my family and job. I prayed constantly about what God wanted for my life and asked him to open doors and give me signs of what he wanted me to do. In that time I had Several Major signs from God about staying and doing the Internship. It was in these months that I also had the greatest growth. Right when I got to the point that I could not take it any longer and I just wanted to go home to my family, God kept lifting me up and telling me to just stick it through and trust in him.
I have always been someone who needs facts to believe in something I do not know, and I’ve questioned Christianity for years. It is only now that I have had countless miracles happen in my time here that I can stand and praise God. I thought that by coming here the only thing I would be addressing was my addiction to weed. But I was so wrong. All the things I struggled with I have addressed now.
Yes, I occasionally still have struggles but nothing like how they plagued my life previously. I am on the mend with a lot of the broken friendships and have got to the point where now they trust me again and know that the old Jamie is back.
I can now live life not searching for approval from women as I have found that the love that God gives is enough.
I know that previously I have tried to run my own journey and it has not worked for me at all, but since letting God take control, my life is in a place that I never could have imagined. And the Best is yet to come.
Thankyou One80Tc for saving my life, and putting up with me for those 12 months.
Also thank God for his never ending Grace and Love.