My trip to Pueblo. A Story of heat, fights, and rehab.
My trip down to Pueblo was a long drive. I left my parents’ house where I was poorly detoxing. (basically, I was high and drunk my entire detox) I had cancelled all my accounts and said goodbye to my friends. I was going to a 6 to 9 months rehab, my 12th rehab in 10 years. I wasn’t excited to go but like every decision I made in my life it was impulsive and not well thought through.
I said goodbye to Cheyenne and Fort Collins and drove to Pueblo. The drive wasn’t bad I have driven much further to treatment. I don’t know what I was expecting, I guess I thought I would be cured in 6 months’ time. I didn’t know much about the place or what I was getting myself into. We booked a hotel in Pueblo at the Comfort inn. The heat there was already unbearable, but I had air conditioning. I had no idea how much hotter literally and figuratively it was going to get in Pueblo.
I was going to a treatment center or rehab facility let’s call it Sunshine Rehab. I left the hotel reluctantly and we looked for the place of hope that would cure all my mental and behavioral ailments. It was a small place I got in and everything seemed fine to begin with. I got there, and they did your typical intake. I went outside to smoke with all the women there and the first question I was asked was: "Did you come from jail?' I was taken aback because I am not the jail type. My response was: "Err...I came from my parents’ house?" they looked at me weird and I knew maybe I wasn't in the right place.
After a short intake I went back to the 'Orientation Room" where yet again people were asking me if I came from jail. People were talking about gangs and prison time. I was a little shocked. I realized I didn't belong there, so I went to the case worker and begged to go home. (which would be a pattern of mine for the 8 days I was there) I couldn't stop crying which apparently made me a "Pussy" I tried to relate to people there. I made up lie after lie about me stealing and shooting up meth every day.
While I was there I tried my best to not be myself as much as possible. I did have fun for a good 3 days acting silly and having fun but then things seemed to go downhill rather quickly and strongly. The girls started fighting a lot which didn't bother me until I was involved. I am not the fighting or confrontational type and they basically forced you to be. I got in a fight with some crazy lady who till this day I think just smoked too much meth. I couldn't handle everything that was going on.
I ended up in the hospital twice begging the nurses not to take me back to Sunshine Rehab. I even attempted suicide which no one really seemed to care. The E.R. staff said I did it for "Attention" and told me to, "Pull up my big girl panties and suck it up." Wow life changing advice, right? I was treated horribly at the hospital, so I went back to Sunshine,
My last day at the rehab. I kept asking to get my stuff and leave they told me to call my Probation Officer and Therapist, but they never called back I had been trying to reach them the entire time I was there. I couldn't do it anymore, so the following happened.
One girl was picking fights with everyone. I heard screaming and arguing my last few days there. The treatment centers solution was to have a group called. "Game" which was basically putting you in a "hot seat" and having everyone yell at you, which til this day I have no idea what that ever accomplishes. We did game, and everyone was screaming in each other’s face. I could feel my anxiety rising and boiling underneath the surface. After two hours in an extremely hot room screaming at each other and not getting anywhere we went back to our "Orientation Room"
I went inside the room saw the sad excuse for dinner waiting for me. I said I was going to "Monad" which was basically time out facing the wall. Which I had done all day to try and calm down, but it wasn't working, I left the room put on two shirts, filled my water bottle, put on my sunglasses and running shoes, and walked out the side door setting off the alarm. I will never in my life regret what I did, it was a good decision.
I ran away listening to the distant alarm going off the farther I got. I ran the wrong way at first, so I had to run back in front of the treatment center. I saw one of the girls there and tried to be inconspicuous whispering “Shit” multiple times as I ran by. I went the right way got to Spradley Bar motors and used a nice gentlemen’s cell phone. I called my mom crying begging for her to not let me go back. I walked a mile in 98-degree heat to the closest hotel. It was the Super 8 the sign seemed like a beacon of hope my ticket out of that dreadful place. I got a room and a nice lady who sold weed pipes gave me a whole pack of cigarettes. It’s amazing how beautiful people can be.
I stayed there and called everyone I could to let them know I left and that I was sorry I left the way I did. I called and called and called. I was very lucky that people responded and wanted to help me out. I stayed at the hotel for two days then bought a bus ticket to Denver where my parents picked me up and brought me home.
What did this incident teach me? That I have had a crazy life regardless of being homeless or in jail. My experience has made me strong so much stronger than a facility which yells at you in group can make you. I’ve survived overdoses, suicide attempts, and being in the wrong place at the wrong time. I want this experience to teach me that I need to change my life. I’m tired of moving here and there then screwing up and ending up in a place like Sunshine Rehab. I am ready to change, and I know I need my past strength to help me build a better future.