My first contact with zen was in October 2017. I was completely lost and desperate , and could not see a way out of my addiction . My life was vacant of any meaning or hope. I reached out to my mother ,looking for a way out , I found Zen’s website here on google. I rang up and got an assessment that day with the program manager. I was scared when i turned up full of anxiety. Truthfully I don’t remember much about the assessment . Only two staff members faces and names and how a tinge of hope entered my life for the first time in many years. My detox was to be complicated and in conjunction with the Auckland Opiate Treatment Service division of CADS. This was organised by the very passionate and professional clinical staff. They made this complicated bureaucratic process that was not the norm with AOTS very smooth and easy for me as they did all the organising. Which was amazing to be able to make something like that work in such a sort amount of time.
“Once I was In zen and the detox done I was introduced to the zen family. A mix of all backrounds and stories who all shared a common thing, addiction. Of my 3 month period at zen I engaged in a nothing short of a life changing program structured around a therapeutic community model. Although confronting, challenging and an emotional journey that some days left me exhausted by bed time. It was what in the ended built hope, courage , tools and eventually lead to the daily maintenance of actions that has allowed me to have a new life clean and sober.
To sum up zen, the staff are all understanding ,professional and truely care as most of them have all been to the depths of addiction which requires help to recover from. I still Go back to zen for their aftercare program almost 2 years later when i can as my life has become full and i have learnt a new way of life. I think this has been huge for me as even once clean / sober life still is life and i will always continue to learn and grow and in those early days the support and opportunity to be able to go back to zen for the day program and also to give back to a community which gave me so much more than just a life free of drugs. Most of all I learnt who I was. From where I was two years ago before zen to now is sometimes hard to believe . The internal anxiety and depression which plagued me my whole life and I thought was my life sentence has lifted. I did not believe this was a possibility for me as i had tried for so many years to free my self from these internal struggles. I went to zen to get clean and in the ended I found freedom.