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Write Your Own Story

By Andrew Rothermel, President and CEO of Origins Behavioral HealthCare


I have written many personal life stories this year. One of the largest stories I have written has been the relocation of myself and my family from Pennsylvania to Florida. This was a move that we saw coming when I became the CEO of Origins Behavioral HealthCare, but also a move that was bittersweet with the thought of leaving a community with a lot of friends, family and other deep ties. At times, change does not come easy, but I know today because of my own journey that change is a necessary part of life which ultimately facilitates personal growth. As a new year starts, so many of us have the opportunity to write new personal stories. Stories of hope, of strength, of peace and of freedom.


The horror stories that are written in the grips of active addiction are riddled with fear, pain, hopelessness and desperation. The suffering is palpable and the wreckage is obvious. Until that moment of clarity – that intervention of Spirit, that sliver of willingness to get help, or just that decision to try a new way of life – that story never has a chance of changing.


Over the past year, Origins has worked with thousands of clients who have chosen to take that first step by deciding to turn the page and start writing a new chapter in their lives. These chapters have pages full of possibilities, opportunities, healings, and hope.  We have heard touching stories of families reuniting and successful careers blossoming. As an organization, we are proud to have played a part in journeys where men and women transform their lives into powerful stories of hope.


As fearful and uncertain at times as I was to make significant life changes, my dedication and passion for helping more individuals and families recover from this disease outweighed my fear of changing. The opportunity to support the inspired work of our clinical team, plus participating in the addictions treatment public policy conversations taking place in Florida during this critical time was more important to me than appeasing these fears. Though fear can keep anyone trapped, I have learned that willingness and courage in spite of uncertainty can produce remarkable results. Through my willingness to move past fear, I have been given the opportunity to affect the addiction treatment industry and community in new ways. As we move forward into the new year, we are all offered this same experience.


This is the time to write a new chapter in your life. The freshness of 2017 is an opportunity to not let the pages of your past influence the adventures of your future.  A chance to write a story where you live in freedom and have recovered from the horror stories that drugs and alcohol have forced you to write over and over again.  With this attitude of willingness, you cannot fail.


We do recover.




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If you or someone you love has a substance use or mental health disorder, Origins Behavioral HealthCare can help. We will work alongside you to provide the most comprehensive treatment available.