Hi my name is Ozzy Mac,
This is my story of Substance Abuse and finding new hobbies.
So a little about me: I grew up in American Fork. I am the oldest of three, I have two younger sisters. My family life was a little different. My mom worked a lot at the Utah State Prison and my dad was in and out of the State Mental Hospital a lot growing up. I ended up at a young age helping the family out wherever I could. Life was pretty rough sometimes, but we managed.
After graduating in 2002, my grandpa who was one of my closest friends passed away. At that time, I was asked by my family to move in with my grandma and take care of her. I turned 21 a short time later and began drinking. For me, I drank to get rid of the pain of my grandpa’s passing. But it wasn’t working, and was just turning into an unhealthy hobby.
At the age of 21, I struggled with alcohol abuse. I tended to drink a little bit too much and I thought it was fun not to feel anything. After a year of this, I was able to quit cold turkey and didn’t have another drink until the fall of 2018. I was doing well and I was finding other things to do with my time. I got married, got a new home, and had three little boys.
Life was going good. I had what I wanted, but as life goes, I hit a speed bump early on with my three boys. My wife and I were informed that all three of my boys were Autistic and diagnosed with such. This was a trial that was a little overwhelming. I tried many ways to cope with this for awhile, but in the fall of 2018, I slipped and I began to drink again. Yeah it was a beer here and there or maybe a shot of something stronger. It started to turn into an unhealthy hobby of not feeling again. I did notice I had a problem and I needed to fix it for my family.
I had my last drink in December of 2018. I discovered a hobby that makes me forget about my problems the same way as drinking, but something that made me feel happy and it was a healthy hobby.
In the past, I watched Bob Ross on TV as a kid. As an adult I continued to view Bob’s shows on YouTube. Everytime I watched his shows I thought to myself, “If I can learn his techniques, I could paint like him one day.”
So the later part of January of 2019, I bought all the supplies at my local craft store. The next day I painted my first painting using Bob’s techniques. The first painting didn’t come out that bad.
After the first painting I fell in love with painting landscapes. Over time I increased my knowledge with techniques by watching more Bob Ross, Bill Alexander (Bob’s Teacher), Kevin Hill and Sutrat Davies on YouTube. 4 professional oil painters who all have very different and unique techniques of oil painting.
I have been painting ever since and I’m up to 23 completed paintings. For me, when I paint I go into my own little world and it’s a very happy place.
In my eyes I’ve finally found a healthy hobby. I haven’t even thought once about going back to drinking.
Sometimes finding something that makes you happy is a way to fight away substance abuse and live a healthier life. I know I definitely did. 🙂
Guest post by: Ozzy Mac