Recovery Talks: The Podcast
Death By Poison

Death By Poison

August 1, 2022
To most people, yet another opioid death might seem like just another statistic. But for Ed and Brighid Hillmuth, the tragic end of their son, Christopher, shattered their world, leaving them with the enormous task of trying to make sense of it, understand it, and use those discoveries to help others.
 
This is a deeply personal, honest, and raw episode. Marc and the Hillmuth's trace their son's impactful but shortened life. We learn that, like many who have died from opioids, nobody necessarily plans to end their life by way of ingesting fentanyl. But this powerful, dangerous substance knows no allegiance to anyone, nor does it play favorites. This brutal truism sent Ed and Brighid on a long path of recovery, chronicled in harrowing detail.
 
"His worst decision wasn't going to define his life."
 
Brighid's words are poignant and act as a jumping-off point where grief and tragedy lend themselves to healing and helping. The Hillmuths talk at length about their journey, that tragic day, and their foundation, created in honor of Christopher and designed to be a help and a resource to others experiencing the same trauma.
 
Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org
— 
Please, Somebody Pull My Brake

Please, Somebody Pull My Brake

July 29, 2022

Get ready for a high-energy, rapid-fire episode of genuine, forthright conversation on faith-based recovery!

In substance-use recovery herself, Angel Nichols is the Clinical Coordinator for Arc Recovery Services in Akron, Ohio. She and Marc engage in a feverish, high-octane discussion on 'stigma' and God's role in helping a person like Angel to fight it.

"As much as I wanted to stop, my body was on auto-pilot."  

Angel's story is jaw-dropping. Raised by parents who were addicts, it took years for her to arrive at a place in her life where she could finally start to recover from, in her words, "the things the world told me that I am." She also talks at length about discovering a place where she felt at home and where "she wasn't a leper, where I belonged somewhere."

Marc and Angel also talk about her role as a peer-recovery supporter and how her faith-based approach within her role at Arc has become her life's mission: to assist others in fighting stigma and finding that same feeling of inclusion and acceptance.

Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org

Radical Acceptance

Radical Acceptance

July 18, 2022
Danica Adams doesn’t mince words, and when it comes to telling her recovery story, she is not shy. Honesty is not in short supply. It takes profound courage to describe such a complex and deeply personal narrative.  
 
At 14, her sister died of brain cancer. That same year, Danica became pregnant and continued life as a teen mother. Only a couple of years later, she began to use drugs, a decision which would later prompt both an arrest and a felony conviction.
 
“I was physically, emotionally, and spiritually dead.”
 
In this dynamic episode, Marc and Danica explore her early life, one filled with excerpts that most adults will never experience, including events involving human trafficking, being a victim of domestic violence, multiple incarcerations, multiple overdoses, homelessness, and prostitution. And none of those events produced a sober life. Danica finally reveals to Marc the game-changing moment that ultimately set her on the road toward ongoing recovery. 
 
Listen now to this powerful, blistering episode with two peer-recovery specialists digging for the truth in the hopes of that truth eventually helping others.
 

Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  

Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org

152 Days and Counting

152 Days and Counting

July 11, 2022

Ten years. Ten years of ‘skill-building’.  That’s a good amount of time. Musician and writer Kevin McManus built up a decade of the ‘skills’ that enable those with a substance-use disorder to hone their craft. The craft of being dishonest. The art of perfecting the ruse.  And then it finally all caught up to him.

It what may be the singular most unique episode of this podcast, Marc speaks honestly and directly with Kevin who, at the time of this recording, was in substance-use disorder recovery for exactly 152 days.  Kevin opened the door and let us into his world, one that slowly and perilously moved him ever closer to a place where he had no other option than to ask for help.  In his words, “I didn’t want to die, but I didn’t care if I lived.”

This is a blatantly revealing episode, a tour de force of transparency and candor.  And it’s even more revealing because this episode also has a ‘video’ companion, so subscribers can listen to and watch the interplay as Marc and Kevin discuss his emotional journey…now 152 days and counting.  

 

Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  

Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org

The Waiting, The Wearing-Through, and the Willingness

The Waiting, The Wearing-Through, and the Willingness

June 13, 2022
Just the memories and a microphone. No safety-net. Nothing to fall back on. Just like that decision to finally ask for help, sometimes the realization that the time has come and it is now can only be arrived at by oneself.
 
In this explosive, gripping episode, Marc rides solo. He recounts his story, where he migrated from the successful corporate-executive lifestyle to the alcoholic and addict who had no other recourse but to mutter those three critical words: please help me.
 
"My durability had worn through."
 
Follow Marc's captivating journey, from sought-after L.A. session-guitarist to high-earning corporate sales leader to cherished friend and musical colleague for Michael Stanley and The Resonators. Throughout these different chapters, Marc reflects on the role that drugs and alcohol played, how they dominated his life, how his addiction nearly toppled everything, and how one important event finally provided the impetus to stop the madness.
 
This is a spellbinding episode with no details spared, and it's a riveting reminder that, as Marc says, "When you get out of the way, the right stuff comes through.”
Just a Dad from Akron

Just a Dad from Akron

June 1, 2022
"Be the change that you want to be."
 
It was a seemingly simple decision to change schools that moved the momentum of a young person's life trajectory. It would be easier, he thought. Closer to home. That fateful choice would take his early adult life off course into a world complete with bewildering delusions, bad decisions, and a big bend in the road. 
 
Kenny Lambert is one of the reasons this podcast exists. And while his story is no more or less important than any other journey that we have featured on this podcast, it does seem simply perfect that this Kenmore native represents the 50th episode—living proof that recovery is possible. 
 
Kenny Lambert explains to Marc in gritty, authentic realism and in no uncertain terms that substance use disorder had its grip on his life and that his life was descending in flames. In fact, at one point, Kenny Lambert pleaded with the Divine: "If you're really God, put me in jail."
 
How does a person who is seemingly at Death's doorstep arrive at becoming both a dedicated father and a successful businessperson? Kenny's ongoing journey is a case study in moving from crash-and-burn to redemption. It's a profile featuring someone who could not have gone any lower than the bottom and eventually worked his way into sobriety and a re-imagined version of himself. He created a business that supports artists and those in the day-to-day work of supporting sobriety and positive change in his community. He is Just a Dad from Akron
 
 
This is a breathtaking story, and it's a perfect one for this 50th episode.

 

Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  

Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org

When It’s Time For the Hard Conversation

When It’s Time For the Hard Conversation

May 17, 2022

It's the front line of tomorrow's America, and being on the front lines can be tiring and messy. It can be lonely yet crowded and chaotic. The front lines in the life of a middle-school student are like a minefield. The students confront, dodge, fix, and try to understand the obstacles placed in their daily lives on the edge of being an adult yet with a child's life experiences. Never really knowing how it impacts them and what the future implications might be down the road.

Enter the middle-school counselor James Shannon. In this frank episode, James talks about the myriad of issues that confront our next generation and how he helps them navigate the choppy waters of early teenage adolescence. James also reminds adults that while the problems experienced by middle-school students may not seem critical, they are of paramount importance to the student, and those problems can be life-altering events.

Marc and James also discuss some warning signs where anxiety and depression can trigger more complex situations and how family and mentors can be on the lookout for them. This practical, sometimes severe, and nuts-and-bolts discussion can impact anyone connected to a young person's challenging, rewarding, and tumultuous life.

 

Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  

Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org

A Hobby Turned To a Habit

A Hobby Turned To a Habit

May 10, 2022

“I just wanted to feel better. I didn’t want to feel bad.”

These words from Summit County Domestic Relations Court Magistrate Cheryl Wear make it challenging to understand how someone brought up in a well-to-do, loving, well-adjusted Christian home, who never experienced a drop of alcohol, could arrive at this place. A place where simply aspiring to drink until you blackout meant successful relief.

Marc welcomes Attorney Cheryl Wear as she speaks at length about her journey. It is an experience that includes the downward spiral of substance abuse, disrupted family events, lost jobs, and finally being exiled from her husband and children. At the moment of  ‘rock bottom,’ she knew that her previous conception of an alcoholic ‘being some toothless guy who lived under a bridge’ was false, erroneous, and now completely altered. 

In this episode, Cheryl chronicles her climb out of the hole. She reflects on her re-connection to the importance of Christianity in her life. She vividly explains how her strength allowed her to finally find a new relationship with her children. And she confirms the fact that this disease called ‘alcoholism’ can sink its fangs into anyone and anybody. It’s a powerful episode and a unique story of redemption. 

 

Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  

Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org

Rise Up: A Story of An Adult Child of Alcoholics

Rise Up: A Story of An Adult Child of Alcoholics

May 2, 2022

In childhood, Crissy Youngblood was surrounded by grown-ups who struggled and suffered from alcoholism and drug abuse. She is a survivor of the consequences of what is known now as a Mental and Physical Heath Disorder. Born to a mother who was only 16 and later died from complications of her disease, Crissy realized early on that her world lacked healthy boundaries. Her relationships with relatives and friends were absorbed in a life that was not like her friends at school and, later, sometimes included very inappropriate attention from men with the wrong intentions. 

But strength and perseverance have a way of polishing a shining star with a kind soul, helping them to find courage, to dig deep, and to rise. After becoming a mother herself, Crissy found an alternative path, from what was her childhood to her reality. She dedicated herself to breaking the chain of trauma and committed her life to achieve through adversity.

She never gave up.  Today, she has overcome and has a family life, a working farm, and a life with a partner with whom she walks together along the path of sobriety.

Join Marc as he shares Crissy's fantastic journey from pain and despair to hope and a future. Discover how Crissy found an exhilarating strength that we may not know we possess.

 

Unicorns and Polka-Dots: A Song of Hope

Unicorns and Polka-Dots: A Song of Hope

April 25, 2022

At 24 years of age, most young people have moved in a career direction. Some have even chosen marriage. A few are giving birth and starting families. Some, like Brianna Brady, will get to choose none of them. Losing one's life to substance-use disorder can rob families of so many things.

In this breathtaking and stark episode on both substance-use disorder and grief, Marc sits down with Joe Brady, Brianna's father. Joe talks at length about Brianna's three-year battle. But more than just sharing the details of yet another victim of substance use, Joe shares wisdom and a powerful message for those who sometimes get left out in the cold: the family members and friends who do their best to help their loved ones navigate their addiction in the hopes of overcoming it, and the arduous task that presents itself to them.

This episode documents a critical life lesson and, in a way, a future challenge for others: the outcome of your loved one is, by and large, beyond your control, and that result rests, ultimately, with the person experiencing substance-use disorder.

Marc and Joe speak directly to those on the front lines of waging the battle for their loved ones in this open and insightful episode through insight, honesty, frankness, and even' song.’

Your feedback is important to us, please take our show survey here.  

Find out more at RecoveryTalks.org

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App