Carlos Meets Carlos


The moment I saw Carlos coming across the Wear Gloves campus I thought, now here’s a cool guy.  His confident stride was succinct with a humble and kind demeanor.  As Carlos introduced himself, there was an immediate relaxed flow in our conversation; though I could sense he was uncertain what exactly to share.  We simply started with speaking about his time here at Wear Gloves.  Carlos began his journey at Wear Gloves working 1 day a week in the Dignity Center.  He eventually worked his way to litter crew, working part-time 5 days a week.  As his hard work was noticed and more hours were available, he was able to increase his time.
Carlos has battled with anxiety over the years. 
His sobriety journey started with the loss of his brother-in-law.  It was only about a month after his brother-in-law’s passing from a drug overdose that Carlos decided he was ready for change. 
It was a struggle, but once sober, Carlos began to realize he didn’t really know who he was.  He secluded himself to break bonds with people from his old life and past habits.  He recalled spending so much time “getting high my whole life, I never thought about anything else.”  Being sober gave him some clarity and space to begin thinking about, in his words, “what I wanted to be.”  The 2 years he spent alone gave him a chance to find himself.  To grow.  To read.  To find some hobbies; gardening and surfing are at the top of his list.   His sobriety has given him the opportunity to find himself.  “Being sober allowed me to focus on myself and do stuff I needed to do. I have insurance now, and Mr. Ken gave me his old van.  I haven’t had a vehicle in years.”
Carlos is excited about his plans to renovate the van into a camper van.  I can see him now with his surf board on top his camper van enjoying the life he is working so diligently and humbly to build.

He recalled a turning point after about a year and half, when everything was going well, but he was still battling with anxiety, “I wasn’t comfortable with myself.”  It was around that time Mr. Ken came to him with an opportunity.  “He came to me to ask if I could be a supervisor”, as Carlos paused and then continued, “I thought there was no possible way I could do it…the talking to people and being myself.  I knew I could do the job.  I was just worried about being myself.”
He felt like he still had not found himself without his addiction.  Turns out, that was the best thing for Carlos. 
“The more I push myself out of my comfort zone the better it gets….I just seem to adapt.  I really enjoy it”, he said with slight surprise.  “Every day I feel better and better.  I thought I was already better.  But every day I feel better and better.”  

Carlos doubted he would ever be where he is today. “I never thought I was going to get better because I was in a hole for such a long time.”  Leading a team and having people look to him for direction boosts his confidence a little more each day.  The trust that has been placed in him has enabled him to drive past some of his insecurities and see his true potential.  “It’s amazing for me”, he stated, “I trust Ken and Wendy, they are good people.”
Carlos has some big goals.  He’s exploring opportunities as a lineman or electrician.  He admits his journey has been a long one, but he feels confident in his future.  He can lend a hand and help others that come to Wear Gloves, uncertain and uneasy about making a change.  He recognizes one of his main jobs now is being there for new people taking brave steps.  He can relate to walking into the unknown, feeling unknown to others and to oneself.

I’m still not certain Carlos recognizes it yet or not, but his greatest impact on campus just might be the new faces that see his journey and glean hope that restoration is possible.  He’s making ripples with each step towards better.

Tiffany TuckerCarlos Meets Carlos


Join the conversation
  • Melissa - April 18, 2023 reply

    Carlos is a great hard working man. He is highly loved and valued at work. He talks to everyone making them feel more at ease. His journey has just begun and we all see so much in him. I am proud to not only call him my coworker but also call him My friend.

  • Charlotte Rozanski - May 4, 2023 reply

    I really didn’t know Carlos before he started working at the “warehouse “. He started out with conflict,not of his doing, but typical work place shenanigans . He managed this like riding a wave. He’s coming out of his shell and just like he said it’s getting better and better. Good job Carlos and look forward to the months to come.

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