Herisdelvis got into trouble through alcohol and drug use and needed a solution.
“I had to make a choice whether to go to rehab or to go back to New Jersey and continue my mess,” Herisdelvis, 30, said. “I didn’t want to go back. It was either I continue drinking, I continue smoking and I don’t go to court or I go do something that’s going to help me with my alcohol and anger problems and stop doing drugs.”
He opted to get help at Adult & Teen Challenge Ohio Valley. His mother-in-law suggested the agency, pointing out the benefit of its faith-based programs. “I was pretty much accepting that I had to come, but I didn’t want to be here,” Herisdelvis said.
Initially, he planned to stay for only 30 days until his court date. At that time, 30 days was the longest he’d been clean in 10 years. But after 30 days, he decided to stay. Still, it wasn’t an immediate fix.
“I didn’t really surrender until six months in,” Herisdelvis said. “Ever since then, I’ve accepted the fact that I’m here to stay for the whole year.”
Herisdelvis will graduate in September 2023.
At the six-month mark, he accepted Jesus as his savior. “I gained a lot of clarity on life, I guess, seeing that everything I was doing wasn’t working and it wasn’t right,” Herisdelvis said. “I had to make a change in my life.”
Before coming to ATCOV, Herisdelvis knew about God and Jesus Christ, but he never read the Bible. The relationship consisted of him asking God for help when something went wrong. At ATCOV, he attends church three times a week and reads the Bible regularly. The Bible he got at ATCOV is his first.
“Life is 100 percent different,” Herisdelvis said. He still gets angry but doesn’t act on it. “Between Jesus and the groups that we have here for counseling, it definitely has helped me control my anger,” Herisdelvis said.
He’s learned that he doesn’t need to understand everything and the less he worries, the less he stresses.
After graduating, Herisdelvis wants to get his commercial driver’s license and become a truck driver. He plans to return to West Virginia where his wife and three-year-old daughter are living.
“Basically I want to just go back to being a father and a husband,” he said.