Isaiah has a had a lot of firsts lately. His first day of college, his first apartment, and the first time that he has felt exceptionally excited about his future. Yet, just a few years ago Isaiah couldn’t image a future that bright. Throughout high school, Isaiah struggled with depression and fitting in with his peers. Isaiah describes the thoughts during that time, “Why I am doing this? Why do I keep going on? I feel like I can’t do any of this.” He would hear his thoughts and felt like giving up—felt like ending his life. Isaiah spent over a year in a residential treatment program in Utah to treat his depression before moving to our 24/7 supervised residential program on his 18th birthday.

During his first year in our program, Isaiah learned how to live independently, gained skills to communicate how he was feeling and learned how to recognize when he wasn’t doing well and when to ask for help. He is very proud of the fact that his insights and understanding of his illness have allowed him to assist our staff in a few group sessions by facilitating groups with his peers. Isaiah’s progress has been remarkable. Soon after turning 19, Isaiah was ready to take the next step in his recovery.

Now, Isaiah lives independently in our Garden Apartments complex and started community college to work on a career in computers and information technology. Our staff regularly check in to ensure that he receives the support necessary to be successful. Isaiah has even joined our work crew and performs janitorial duties to earn extra income and is looking forward to a potential internship with us in his upcoming semester at college. Isaiah says, “I am so thankful and excited about the next step in my journey.” 

Arrowleaf works to build and maintain well-being for individuals of all ages across Southern Illinois, regardless of their life situation. If you are having trouble weathering the storms that everyone faces throughout their lives, visit us.