What is magic? Is it the ability to cast spells or brew potions? Is it pulling a rabbit out of a hat? Or maybe it is something more. Maybe, just maybe, it is facing a world that far too often beats us down with a smile on your face. Sometimes, in a world as cruel as addiction, finding hope can be magical.
This week’s spotlight is an example of how Beit T’Shuvah took an addict without a home…that had no passion in his life…that was absent of all will to ever get off drugs, let alone to make anything out of his life…and magically gave him everything he was missing. This week’s spotlight is on Miles R.
Miles wasn’t always the happy go lucky person we know and love. He was raised in El Segundo and, from a young age, addiction was part of his family’s dynamic. His family loved him, but he knew early on that something was off. “My family was different than everyone else’s around me. People would come in and out of the house until early morning hours and I knew meth was being used”.
Eventually, Miles found himself in the same depths of addiction that had engrossed his family in his early years. What started with just weed on the weekend, led to cocaine, meth, and a new nickname he “human trash can.” That name entails everything you might expect from it. He’d do coke until his nose bled, participated in armed robberies, and found himself in meth psychosis—you name it, he tried it…and was probably addicted to it.
After his bridges were burnt and his runway had turned to a deadend, he reached his “rock bottom.” It took homelessness and a trip to a mental hospital, before his 13 year run finally brought him to his knees, “I was lost, and I didn’t even care how lost I was.” It was at this point he heard of Beit T’Shuvah from a childhood friend, (that he used to get high with) who had gone through the program years earlier and was now living a joyous life in sobriety. He knew it was time he reached out for help. After daily pleading calls to Lysa Harrison and weeks on the waitlist, Miles finally got the green light.
His first real smile in years.
Miles arrived at the front entrance of Beit T’Shuvah with nothing more than the clothes on his back, but none of that mattered because he was finally home. He found himself in a community where he could learn to live at peace and embrace his dark side—a community that allowed him to thrive—a community that not only gave him the opportunity to come to terms with the environment he was raised in, but to overcome and accept that part of his story.
Miles has 8 months clean now, and with it, has altered his once perplexed state of being and changed his life into one he’s proud to call his own. Quickly, Miles jumped head first into everything that BTS could offer him. He is a part of Freedom Song, choir, worked the front desk, and interns in the film department (hey, me too!) With all of this on his plate, it’s quite evident he didn’t come to Beit T’Shuvah to “dip his toes” into the program. He devotes his existence to giving back to the program that saved his life.
Nowadays, Miles has a resting-happy-face. His love and kindness is infectious. Recently, a staff member (unprovoked) said this about Miles: “For the longest time I thought Miles was on a pink cloud, but then one day I realized that that was just Miles. He had just found happiness and loved to show it.”
So if anyone tries to tell you magic isn’t real, all you have to do is tell them to look around the Beit T’Shuvah community. Because even when the potions have been flushed, and the rabbits have been left in the hats, magic can be found everyday in residents like Miles.