“The mentality and behavior of drug addicts and alcoholics is wholly irrational until you understand that they are powerless over over their addiction and unless they have structured help, they have no hope”
For all of my life leading up to finding recovery I felt very out of place. I knew I wasn’t thinking or worrying about the same things kids my own age were. Addiction has a fairly strong presence in my family. But I didn’t truly understand what addiction was until I became an addict. There are countless amounts of addicts in the world today who don’t believe they are addicts. For some odd reason, I knew all along, even when I was using. I merely just accepted this fact about myself and kept on using. And although I accepted this fact I had no clue what recovery as an addict looked like. The people who were addicts back when I was using never chose to stop. So recovery back then seemed like half a distant dream and half an unwanted option.
Addiction is an extremely progressive disease. Whether society chooses to accept this statement or not, it is what I believe to be true. The thing that sometimes bothers me as an addict is when other people who aren’t addicts, people we as recovering addicts typically refer to as “normies,” say things along the lines o,f “Why didn’t you just stop?” or, “Isn’t it all just about will-power?” Man, if those were true statements there would be a hell of a lot less deaths among addicts today. Maybe even addiction itself wouldn’t be a reality. I don’t get so angry about questions like this today. It pushes me further to reach out to help those who maybe don’t understand the true nature of an addict. Technically, as a “normie,” it isn’t their job to understand it through and through. It’s imperative for an addict to understand addiction. Truly, I can only speak on my behalf. I know I have no control over my addiction. I entered recovery because the pain of using finally outweighed the pain of changing. And then some might pose the question, “Well how did you or other addicts make it this long without using if you supposedly have no control?” Ah yes, honestly a very good question. The reason why I’m able to write on this blog today and not have drugs or alcohol coursing through my system is because me and many other recovering addicts have to work a certain program of recovery. Without a program for a way of living in recovery, addicts are doomed to fail. To some it might be the bare minimum, to others it might envelop their entire lives. To me, I try to find the balance between living the regular life recovery gave me and living a life of recovery. I go to meetings as regularly as I can. I question and watch certain behaviors of myself. I try my damnedest to work on my character defects. I meet with my sponsor and work the 12 steps with him. I surround myself with people that love me and only want what is best for me. I try to develop a spiritual connection with my Higher Power every day, whatever it may be that day. Sometimes it’s the connections with other addicts in meetings. Sometimes it’s how a walk with my dog will make me feel. Sometimes it’s praying and meditating with whatever power is listening. Most importantly, I ask for help. This is something that’s hard for most people to do, especially addicts. As addicts, most of us develop the thinking of “I know what’s best for me.” I know I did until I started going to 12 step meetings. Reaching out to others for help has honestly saved my life more than once in this past year.
Recovery isn’t merely just abstaining from using. It’s everything I have listed previously and more. It’s something that is never-ending. Recovery is not a destination, it’s the whole ride. It takes some hard work and effort to uphold but it will reward you with what you put into it. You get what you give. I have learned this phrase to be true with most anything in this life I’ve lived so far. Whether you are another addict, a “normie,” or you aren’t so sure about what you are, I hope this post has helped you in some way or another. If it didn’t, I implore you to give me some feedback. I would love to go more in depth on certain facets of this post later. Thanks for taking time out of your day to read this! Much love! ♥