My name is Billy Mousser and I’m a recovered addict and alcoholic. Many who know me understand what this means. Others may wonder, what does this mean? am I a bad person because of it? why would I make this statement on a public level? or why is it important at all.
I have learned and decided a long time ago that by holding my personal struggles, triumphs and accomplishments to myself would not serve anyone who may be able to relate and even say “yes, this has happen to me too”. Nelson Mandella once said “As I liberate myself from the burdens that hold me down, I automatically give others permission to do the same.” So its pretty obvious and most of all, it is part of who I have become and my recovery why I share this personal experience with you.
You see, a little over 25 years ago, I had acquired an addiction to alcohol and other drugs which resulted in many sleepless and painful nights. I had lost everything that had meant anything to me. My family most of all. Prior to this point, I had so many great opportunities to become successful in life. In fact I had become successful on several occasions. A very lucrative and profitable business, travelled throughout parts of the United States doing what I loved the most, playing music in a rock band with my childhood friends, and many other opportunities. If I listed them all they would take up this whole page! Every time these opportunities crashed and burn, alcohol and/or drugs were involved to some proportion. Nevertheless, in fact as I remember it sitting on the tailgate of my unregistered truck, alone again, saying to myself “How did I get here?, What happen?”. I can’t even count how many times this has happen to tell you the truth. But I can still remember, that last time I was on my now unregistered, smashed truck’s tailgate saying the same thing to myself, I looked up into the night. There was not a cloud in the dark blue sky. Only the full moon. Then it hit me, my life had nothing left but myself. Like the dark night with only the moon to look at, all I had to look at was myself. No one else was in my life. No one to blame but myself for where I had ended up and why my life was empty once again. It was that moment that motivated me to seek help. That was February 7, 1992, my birthday. I haven’t found it necessary to drink or use drugs after that moment! I claimed the next day February 8, 1992 as my sobriety date.
Prior to this date, I was introduce to a program in 1989 via a treatment center. I attended the program and met some great people and started adopting the way they were dealing with their own addiction. I had gone to treatment because I was afraid of loosing my family. I had left that treatment center prematurely and thought I could do this sobriety thing without finishing treatment. I found out the hard way. After 8 months of staying sober, I used alcohol and drugs again. thinking I could manage my habit better, but later found out that later that, “I am the real alcoholic and addict”. I am one of those who cannot safely use alcohol or any mind altering substances without getting into trouble. In 1992 when I had return to the program, I took the opportunity to learn more about the condition I was suffering from and most of all, learned how to live my life free of any mind altering substances. The program and its participants had embraced me and molded me into the man I am today. Since that night on my tailgate, I have had many opportunities to be successful. Some I have fallen short but most have fruited into evidence that prove I can be successful without having a drink or a fix. I went back to school and graduated with a bachelor’s in Business Management and a master’s in Adult Education. For the last 20 years I have been employed by an agency that help individuals and families who suffer from addiction. I am currently the Director of Adult Services for this awesome agency. It gives me the opportunity to make a difference in our community. Most of all, I still have my family. I owe so much to my wife and will be forever grateful to her. My children too. All 8 of my grandchildren have never seen me drunk or high. What a blessing that is. Today I have purpose and fulfillment from those I help and those who helped me. I share my experience, strength and hope with the community at large. I’ve been to parts of the world where I have the greatest opportunity I can ask for. That is carrying the message of hope to those who suffer from addiction and want to find a way out.
I hope that those who read this will find some part that they can relate to, with the hope that it will inspire them to find what they are looking for!
One Love, Peace