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Mark’s Story

“My life before Coolmine was a mess. My wife left me to go back to America after a year of being here. Then my girlfriend also left due to my relapse prior to Coolmine.

“My thinking was in no way logical or rational. I never had money to spare and ran up debts due to my alcohol addiction. I had been signed off work for the 2nd time due to my addiction and was in danger of losing both my mind and my job.

“I was sitting on the local library steps talking on the phone and a place was recommended to me. It was a Psychiatric Nurse I was talking to and my question was should I be admitted. I was told to get myself into a place called Cool something or other.

“I went home and googled and up popped Coolmine. Turns out the recommendation was actually Cuan Mhuire. However, everything happens for a reason!!

“It was a very warm welcome into Coolmine by Christina. Unlike some previous places I had gone to the conversation was not accusatory or confrontational. It was a 2-way chat. It felt so amazing not to be judged. However, getting into the pre-entry was a little ropey as I couldn’t put down the drink and I had to be off it a few days to get in. So, on my behalf it was rocky! Once I did, the Counsellors and Group attendees were amazing and helpful and supportive.

“I learned so much through Coolmine and remember a lot as I go along as opposed to everything, if that makes sense. The toolbox they gave me was so big I had to put it on wheels. I remember one counsellor saying the guy who cuts in front of you in traffic… maybe he has a sick child in the car or such – basically, have compassion and understanding rather than getting mad.

“Recently I underwent a medical treatment and it was very painful. A quick thought passed through my mind of having a drink. I was asked later by that psychiatric nurse about the treatment and mentioned that to be told you can’t think of a drink. My reply was “it was only a thought” it doesn’t harm anyone. (Thank you, Christina!)

“Taking things one day at a time is huge. Don’t be worrying about things that may or may not happen in the future. I learned to be grateful. There are a lot of people so much worse off than myself. I learned that sobriety has to be Numero Uno!!

S – Stop

O – Observe

B – Breathe

E – Expand

R – Respond

“Since being in Coolmine, my “washing machine head” has stopped spinning. I believe I am able to rationalise things better and have more patience than lashing out mostly anyways. I have reconnected better with family. I wish people knew how our heads/minds worked in addiction and in recovery. That everything to us isn’t so simple as with others. That anxiety can be a huge issue (for me anyways).

“I have been able to go abroad and get urgent dental work started. All be it I had to borrow some funds for it I never would have done this in active addiction and have saved the last amount required now to finish the treatment which was something I never could have done whilst drinking.

“I have been getting on so much better with family. I have made contacts within AA that I know that I can call, even just to chat, not to mention if my head wobbles or I have a tricky decision or situation to deal with.

“I’ve reconnected with my family. Along with Coolmine I am so grateful to a lot of my family for all their support throughout everything. Some people never had or maybe lost this throughout their addiction or even recovery. The family know who they are without mentioning names!!”

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