Sunday, April 26, 2015

Guest Post: Jennifer Bell

The Night I Was Arrested
The drug K2 appealed to me last year because it was cheap and didn't show up in drug tests. On June 27, 2014 I was arrested for DUI. Luckily they didn't find the K2 in my truck.

In November of 2014 I was hospitalized for heart problems as well as lung problems.

Taking this DUI class and making me write an essay has opened my eyes to the dangers of smoking K2. Not only could it not control my anxiety, but I found myself withdrawing from my kids. I have lost a few friends from my K2, yet I didn't stop until November when I was hospitalized.

I am not taking K2 now, but I have side effects from the former K2 use: COPD, not sleeping, higher blood pressure and anxiety. It also made my PTSD worse.

I am changing through grounding and meditation. I have discovered that my family, my kids, my own mental and physical health are worth more than trying to get high.

Taking control and making myself responsible for my actions are the most liberating things. My teenagers and boyfriend have responded and they respect me more. It feels good to know I am free and working on my health.


Guest Post: Emmette T.

My life was never what it seemed. I look back at what my life became--a slave to addictions and all the excitement they brought.

Drugs can be used for good or bad. Knives help us in our daily life; however a knife can be deadly. 

So with alcohol. Alcohol can lower blood pressure, but in excess its use is a mood altering emotional roller coaster. I know. I have learned that I cannot have one drop of alcohol because I do not have the self-control to know when to stop.

In December of 2014 I gave my heart to the Lord and I am not saying that faith is the only answer to this problem of addiction, but Jesus is my answer and my choice to follow him is the catalyst to change my life forever. 

Guest Post: Julie Andrews

When Impaired Drivers Collide! 
What an experience! Getting a DUI has totally changed my outlook on being so careless. I know in the past I had driven under the influence and I thought at the time I was okay. But after seeing the video of rookies participating in the BAC study [in Carol Johnson's DUI class] I know now that on several occasions I was putting myself and others at risk because of my decisions.

I do enjoy having a drink every now and then. I am not an alcoholic, and can honestly say I don't use any substance as a "happiness device". So many things are effected when using drugs or alcohol. Truthfully being that intoxicated is not only unhealthy, but it can make you not feel well and can make you forget things.

Some of the things that can trigger one to use drugs and/or alcohol could be the company you keep, and emotional stressful situations. There are many other things that can cause someone to run to these substances. Triggers are keys--keys that can open doors to problematic situations. So to being aware of what causes you to have to have a drink or to use drugs can help you make changes to avoid those situations. This awareness will usually help you overcome the needs.

Now those who are addicted, have a range of triggers or keys again. Identify what makes you want or need your substance will enable you to address the underlying issues. I have watched friends and loved ones be taken over by these substances.

Personally, I keep the mentality of mind over matter. Too much of anything isn't good for me.  I choose a different lifestyle because of these experiences. Having to deal with my DUI, for sure,  has made me really think before I act. I never want to go through this again and I won't! That is for certain!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Guest Post: Floyd Chapman's Journey to Sobriety

Floyd Chapman was a student in an April 2015 DUI class I taught and he gave me permission to publish his journey to sobriety. The picture shows Fred as a garden caretaker at Lighthouse Ministries in Lakeland explaining the hydroponics system in a tour of this unique garden. 

In the 1970s I started out with smoking pot and drinking beer. I was influenced by family, peer pressure of friends and my own pressure to fit in with the "IN” crowd. It seemed everyone was having a good time and I was one who never wanted that good time to end. In the 80‘s and 90’s there was more of the same, I did whatever it took to keep my high going legally and illegally. Suddenly there came jail and prison with other so-called friends. 

In the late 90s I really got tired of jail food and tired of those friends. I desired to change things, but I didn’t change all of my addictions. In 1998 my child was born while I was in jail--I had missed the birth. Suddenly I desired to get sober and change. However, I was around users. Finally in late 1999 I stopped using illegal drugs. It was hard to stop cold turkey, but I did it. 

All but one—alcohol. I did not stop drinking and smoking cigarettes. I lied to myself and rationalized. I justified that a few beers was okay.

However, in 2007 after drinking 42 ounces of beer within a hour, I decided to drive home. I blacked out and landed in a ditch. This was lucky because I know I could have killed someone—even a child. This was my last wake-up call. It came down to ME--not all my bad influences. I stopped. 

Then in 2010 I found the Lord. In 2012 I started working for Lighthouse Ministry using my past for good to help others. Life is so much better since then. Good-bye to those years of addictions and hello to sobriety and a better life.me. Suddenly my peers and so-called “friends” were getting worse and so were my addictions.  I did whatever it took to keep my high going legally and illegally. Suddenly there came jail and prison with other so-called friends.

In the late 90s I really got tired of jail food and tired of those friends. I desired to change things, but I didn’t change all of my addictions. In 1998 my child was born while I was in jail--I had missed the birth. Suddenly I desired to get sober and change. However, I was around users. Finally in late 1999 I stopped using illegal drugs. It was hard to stop cold turkey, but I did it.

All but one—alcohol. I did not stop drinking and smoking cigarettes. I lied to myself and rationalized. I justified that a few beers was okay.

However, in 2007 after drinking 42 ounces of beer within a hour, I decided to drive home. I blacked out and landed in a ditch. This was lucky because I know I could have killed someone—even a child. This was my last wake-up call. It came down to ME--not all my bad influences. I stopped.

Then in 2010 I found the Lord. In 2012 I started working for Lighthouse Ministry using my past for good to help others. Life is so much better since then. Good-bye to those years of addictions and hello to sobriety and a better life.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Two Hour High of Marijuana Also Can Cause Permanent Damage


Graphic found on Pinterest from HERE.

Why do we need these substances? Of course there may be some medical benefit in Marijuana, but why recreationally? Because it is easy now?

My addiction rap is out now on YouTube. 



Wednesday, January 28, 2015

DUI Crash

Pray for this young man who was injured in a crash 
with a DUI driver.


Saturday, November 1, 2014

Guest Poems from Recovering Alcoholic Charlie

Charlie shared these two poems in my DUI class today and gave me permission to post on this blog. 

Charlie about his Step 12 AA:


All my life from God I've run
And never have I good things done
When I was the worst that I could be
He blessed my life and protected me
Trading a good and righteous Son
For me a no-good-rotten one
The price for me that Jesus paid
For Him I would have never made
How is it LORD that I, not He,
Escaped that cross at calvary!



For all the men and women 
who dedicated their lives helping others in
a substance abuse programs from Charlie: 

I didn't know that you would come
But called on God--you came
And by His Spirit encouraged some
While from His Word hope gave.
Thank You LORD for faithful servants
Their gifts made room for Thee
Behind prison walls and jail house bars,
The soul you saved was me!  

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Guest Post: Medical Marijuana


The Benefits of Medical Marijuana
Guest Blogger:
Syrrant Henry




As marijuana becomes a more broadly accept part of our lifestyles, the question of how using it can affect our health becomes more relevant. It’s a question that doctors and scientists are still exploring. The most powerful and successful argument that marijuana advocates have made so far is that it can be considered a medicinal drug as well as a recreational one. A combination of scientific and anecdotal evidence indicate that marijuana has an ameliorative effect on a wide range of ailments.

Marijuana is one of the most beneficial and therapeutically active substances known to man. Medical Cannabis refers to the use of the drug cannabis as a physician-recommended herbal therapy, most notably as an antiemetic. Cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes for approximately 4,000 years. Writings from ancient India confirm that its psychoactive properties were recognized, and doctors used it for a variety of illnesses and ailments. These included a whole host of gastrointestinal disorders, insomnia, headaches and as a pain reliever frequently used in childbirth.

In the 1970s, a synthetic version of THC, the primary active ingredient in cannabis, was synthesized to make the drug Marinol, which is available through prescription. It comes in the form of a pill and is also being studied by researchers for suitability via other delivery methods, such as an inhaler or patch. Marinol offers a wide variety of therapeutic applications just to list a few:
  • ·       Hypertension, insomnia
  • ·       Relief of muscle spasms
  • ·       Relief of chronic pain
  • ·       Reduction in interlobular pressure inside the eye
  • ·       Suppression of nausea
  • ·       Weight loss—increase and restore metabolism
  • ·       Constipation and alcohol hangovers

Other uses include:
  • ·       AIDS—Marijuana can reduce the nausea, loss of appetite, vomiting from the condition itself and the medications as well.
  • ·       Glaucoma—Marijuana relieves the internal eye pressure of glaucoma, and therefore relieving the pain and slowing or even stopping the condition.
  • ·       Cancer—Many side effects of the medication to stop cancer can be relieved with Marijuana. Some studies suggest that marijuana tends to slow down the progress of some types of cancer.
  • ·       Multiple Sclerosis—Muscle pain, spasticity, tremors and unsteadiness are some of the effects caused by the disease that can be relieved by Marijuana.
  • ·       Epilepsy—In some patients, epileptic seizures can be prevented with marijuana use.
  • ·       Chronic pain—Marijuana helps to alleviate the pain caused from many types of injuries and disorders.
  • ·       Anxiety, depression or obsession—Even though mild anxiety is a common side effect in some users, cannabis can elevate your mood and expand the mind and be beneficial for mental health issues such as port traumatic stress disorder, clinical depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, and bipolar disorder.
  • ·       Physical addictions—There have been testimonies from opiate users that report an easing of addiction cravings. Some cannabinoids in cannabis are believed to have similar effects as ibogaine, a medication used to treat heroin addiction.

The cannabinoids (chemicals unique to marijuana) mimic the healing effects of naturally occurring chemicals in the brain called Anandimide. However, this naturally occurring cannabinoid also produces the negative effects that one would experience from high concentrations of cannabinoids in marijuana.

Medical marijuana can also benefit you psychologically and spiritually. The herb tends to reveal you true self. It uncovers inner confusion and reals your true direction—if you let it. Marijuana offers an effect that is both energizing and relaxing at the same time. This balanced effect will help some to think more clearly and more efficiently afterwards.


California became the first state to allow the medical use of marijuana in 1996. Many states require a doctor’s approval and all but Washington state require an ID card to be shown at the dispensary or enrollment in a patient registry. Many of the states that allow medical marijuana have an online application process. In most states, patients need to fill out the application, pay a fee and provide identification information. To successfully receive an ID card in most states, patients need a signed statement from a doctor diagnosing the condition and a document stating that medical marijuana is the treatment recommended for the patients’ particular condition and situation. Most of the laws allow dispensaries and outline specific conditions for which medical marijuana can be prescribed. These restrictions always vary by state as to the format and amount of medical cannabis that can be obtained at each visit for personal use.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Defeat Florida's Amendment Two

I was privileged to attend the DON'T LET FLORIDA GO TO POT Drug Summit Tuesday, presented by The Coalition Partnership of Hardee, Highlands and Polk Counties. Excellent speakers included: Dr. Bertha Madras, Professor of Psychobiology at the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, Polk's own Sheriff Grady Judd, and Sergeant Dale Quigley from Colorado which passed the similar Amendment that Florida is considering. Here are a few points from the conference.

The FDA is being circumvented by the ballot box and politics. Since when have we voted on what can easily become an addiction?  Real medicine is not determined by popular vote, says Grady Judd. 

States who have tried medical marijuana have interesting consequences--doctors flying in to prescribe in Montana for their own profit, for example. 

Florida's Amendment Two doesn't specify what diseases will be treated and the amendment doesn't provide a prescription. Caregivers are really dope dealers. 

These associations do not support legalizing marijuana: Florida Medical Assoc., American Medical Assoc., American Cancer Society, American Glaucoma Society, Epilepsy Foundation to name a few. 

What has been heralded as compassionate use is not.
    But isn’t allowing marijuana for the treatment of health problems a compassionate thing to do?
    • Not really. "Medicalizing" this harmful substance has caused truly ill people to refuse proper medical care, thinking that because marijuana makes them feel better they are getting better. Medical practitioners and others who are truly concerned for the sick have higher standards and greater compassion – we want the ill to receive the medicine they need.
    • The medical excuse marijuana movement has become a device used by special interest groups to exploit the sick and dying and well-meaning voters for their own purposes.
    • Rev. Scott Imler, Co-Founder of Prop 215 (California's medical marijuana law) said, "We created Prop 215 so that patients would not have to deal with black market profiteers. But today it is all about the money. Most of the dispensaries operating in California are little more than dope dealers with store fronts."

    Colorado is where recreational use and shipping to other states has happened. Note warnings in the interesting report "The Legalization of Marijuana in Colorado" at www.RMHIDTA.ORG. 

    Wednesday, August 27, 2014

    Dangers Behind the Wheel

    In addition to driving after drinking. . . 


    don't drive sleepy. . . 


    and don't text while driving! All dangerous!