Levi Matteson

Levi’s story teaches us about second chances. He was born in the Dalles, OR and has lived in Wishram, WA since he was 10 years old. At age 12 he was introduced to marijuana by a friend, and started down the path of drinking and smoking his way through his teens. He tried different drugs until he began using meth at 19. By 22, he was heavily using the drug and selling it to others. It’s been a journey for Levi, finding reasons, namely his children, to get sober, and at times falling back into using all over again.

Levi noticed his drug use was a problem when it wasn’t just for fun, it was necessary for everyday life. His advice for someone in that same place: “Don’t listen to the lie that you can’t live without it. There are programs out there that’ll help you. There are people out there that’ll help you. It helps to talk about it. Once you hit that point and pretty much admit that you don’t have anything under control anymore is pretty much the point when you can start taking back ground in addiction.”

It helps to talk about it.

Levi, now sober for the last two years, looks back at how his journey with drug abuse has affected his children, and has since made it a point to teach them that people can change. He says, “That was one of my biggest focuses when I got out of prison, just to make sure that they knew it was possible, and that they were worth making those changes for.”

“Don’t be afraid to ask for help,” Levi tells us. “Even if you stopped using drugs and you started using drugs again, it doesn’t matter if you fall down, it matters if you get back up.”

Let’s Talk. Let’s Listen. Let’s Cultivate Compassion.

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Richard loves the Gorge and is proud to call our beautiful community his home. He struggled with alcoholism for four decades of his life but has been sober for the past nine years. He believes that helping others begins with the simple act of listening.