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A Heartfelt Message from Rick Hollering

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“Live each day as if it’s a precious Gift, because it is” – John Di Lemme

 

As many of teenagers know, every school participates in the annual Red Ribbon week which includes having themes for students to dress coordinately to help stand up as one and ‘say no to drugs.’ However, not many students knew who Rick Hollering was until this year.

Rick Hollering is the head of the Cass County Drug Association along with being a foster parent and working with Department of Children’s Services (DCS). The ironic part of this story is that he has never come to a school to speak to the students; however, for us, he did. He didn’t come to tell us about drugs and what they do to us because many high schoolers already know the basics. He was here to tell students about an issue that many people struggle with in today’s world: opioid overdose.

The convocation was based off a video about two young boys that went to a party and had died the next morning after taking opiods along with alcohol. Pain killers are never the main drug we pay attention to because they have a medical usage; however, many people get addicted after taking them for a certain amount of time. But what makes this issue different than others? What makes this issue a problem that is caused more often? Why are people so oblivious to this problem?

These questions seemed to be asked everyday, but no one has ever tried to give them an answer; however, Rick Hollering took a shot at doing so. His main answer was the idea of ‘Defining Moments.’ The idea of this theory was people, in today’s world, make decision based off the scenery and the peers that surround them in that exact moment. No one ever thinks that the ‘little things will become the bigger things’ until the decision you made turns into regret which is what happened to Rick Hollering. He was found on a golf course almost dead because of an overdose; however, he didn’t think he was making a stupid decision until looking back on it today.

“We all have a moment that defines our future,” said Rick Hollering.

During his speech, Hollering explain that an atom is similar to a moment: we have so many of them that we don’t think if we split one in half that it will matter; however, it matters to quite the extinct. In one split second, a decision can affect the lives of anyone, and sometimes it happens to be too late to press the rewind button. I can sit here and tell people what Rick Hollering came to Lewis Cass and said to the students sitting in the crowd; however, I would just be repeating something over and over which is useless.

Many teenagers sat in the crowd not caring what this guy had to say to us, but I am different. As I listened to Rick Hollering explain the issues, he has witnessed or been through himself, it hit home really hard. When someone makes a decision that they happen to think will be a ‘fun time,’ it always turns into a nightmare, and it needs to be stopped. Life is so precious and many of us take it for granted. We think nothing will happen to us if we are careful enough, but in some circumstances, it can be the other person. We think everyday is promised; however, it’s not. And, most of all, we think that one decision will only affect ourselves; however, it affects our friends, family, and community.

If any of you reading this know of people who have taken opioids, struggle with use of drugs, or just simply want to do it as something fun, please lend a helping hand out for them to grab onto and escape from the dangerousness that they have gotten accustomed to everyday. If any of you reading this have used drugs yourself, please understand the risk you are putting yourself through as you decide to take these pills. Please know your life matters, and tons of people care about you whether you believe so or not. Even if you don’t see someone that seems as if they would be there for you in a second, that person is me: I am and always leave my door open for anyone in need. You are not alone. Don’t make a decision in a split second that could put the rest of your life at risk.

And please remember, as Rick Hollering said, “Our life can be split in time by a moment, but it is an intersection between your future and past. It determines our future, not our past. The past is gone.”

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1 Comment

One Response to “A Heartfelt Message from Rick Hollering”

  1. Kelsey Wise on December 3rd, 2018 7:53 am

    Really great article. Drugs and addiction is a hard concept to really grasp. I personally do not understand the point n getting involved in drugs and do not understand why people do them to start off with. People need more help offered to them and the reason many people overdose is because no one notices that they have such a huge issue.Great article.

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Lewis Cass High School, Walton, Indiana,
A Heartfelt Message from Rick Hollering