Addiction is a serious matter that many in our community arefacing, have faced or are connected to in some way
By age twenty two Trevor Stryker had served two tours in Iraqand had recently gotten out of the military.
But returning home wasn't east, undiagnosed PTSD and aslight brain injury caused his already heavy drinking to skyrocket.
"I didn't have purpose to be alive anymore and drinkinghelped me escape from all of that," said Stryker.
Before he knew it two dui charges and a final incident ofaccidentally entering a stranger's home were the last straw for Trevor.
He said, "You think most people get out of the militaryand they have a lot to be prideful of. And I felt like I was a disgrace. I feltthat I had let a lot of people down, defiantly not who I wanted to be."
Under the guidance of his lawyer Trevor sot treatment andentered a thirty day impatient program at the VA in Grand Island. But giveneverything Trevor had his doubts on recovery.
"I didn't plan on staying sober when I went to treatmentand I don't think very many people expected me to stay sober. My attitude waspoor," he explained.
Relapse is extremely common throughout the recovery processand many relapse multiple times before staying sober.
Some never do and struggle with addiction for a lifetime.
But thanks to the guidance of others in AA Trevor continuedto work the twelve step, continued to attend meetings, total changed up hislifestyle and after six and half years has not had a single relapse.
"It's not easy. I don't think anything in life is easy.You have to work at it to get anything that you want. And recovery isdefinitely a lot of work. And I think that's why a lot of people relapse. Theyget to a point where they're done working," said Trevor.
During his recovery process another big element came intoplay: his now wife Lindsay and her two children.
Trevor became not only accountable for himself but forothers now as well, which he says has become his ultimate support.
"Alcoholics anonymous is not an I program, it's a weprogram. Together by working with your sponsors and utilizing your supportnetwork they help you stay sober."
Trevor now works for the VA assisting homeless veterans tobecome employed and to maintain that stability.
He and his wife are expecting their fourth child and hecontinues to attend AA meetings and work the twelve step program.