I say this without ever experiencing a relapse. I say this because of my experience seeing others come in and out. I’ve led a charmed life in sobriety in that I didn’t get sober at my first meeting, I got sober at my second meeting and I haven’t looked back since. Mind you, not every day is amazing and I’m certainly not skipping around with my spiritual unicorn saying YAY! No, life gets lifey and I get the “F” its – but it’s what I DO that saves me from myself, because at the end of the day I want to drink and escape and numb out.
I’m an alcoholic, that’s what we do. I’ve just realized that my God has a better way for me and when things have gotten to the shitty “F” it point, I do what I was TOLD to do. I call someone, I get to a meeting, I pray and I play the tape. The tape starts out with me at a really nice upscale restaurant/bar and it ends with me at some disgusting dive bar with the scum of the earth people looking for blow and whoever else wants to party with me. That was my life – for over 20 years – check out my book to hear more.
But today I say Relapse sucks because someone I’m close to relapsed – again. Its sneaky, it’s always in waiting and it changes things. No matter how many times I’ve witnessed someone else’s relapse, it’s never easy. It happens and its common and it just effing sucks. Selfishly though, it keeps me sober. It makes me realize how our disease is always doing push-ups. The pilot light is always on.
I recently watched that HBO documentary, “Heroin: Cape Cod, USA”, it was the saddest thing I’ve seen in a while about addiction. I know our country has a huge opiate addiction problem, but I never knew the nitty gritty insides of it until I watched this documentary. My heart goes out to these addicts and their families. I go to Al Anon and it helps me, because it teaches me how to take care of myself and not the alcoholics/addicts in my life. It kills me though when I hear the parent who has a child hooked on Heroin.
Sadly, the statistics aren’t good with 85% of Heroin addicts starting out as prescription pill patients. They got into a car accident or had some kind of surgery and their doctor prescribes Vicodin or Oxycontin – whichever it is. Three out of four of these patients will become addicted and soon will turn to Heroin – because they can’t get any more pills from their M.D. and can’t afford the prescription. Its easier to turn to the streets and star using H. It’s so fucked up that these pharma companies and doctor’s can’t seem to prescribe something else – that isn’t as addictive. This industry needs to step up and take some responsibility and stop blaming the drug addicts that they are manufacturing. It’s like is McDonald’s responsible for the obesity problem in the US? It’s the same exact thing as it all comes back to addiction. Addiction kills and doesn’t care who you are. Food, alcohol, drugs, sex and unhealthy behaviors – they all suck.
I’m praying 2016 will be the year that you don’t relapse anymore and get clean and sober. That’s all I can hope for – me included.