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[ Personal Narratives ]

The Gift of Recovery

Recovery has brought to me one amazing gift after another. Every single day and often times more than just once, I have profound life experiences that I could never have dreamed of occurring or thought to even pray for.

Take today, for example, I was on the bus heading to what I thought was going to be an afternoon at the movie theatre watching the latest Jason Bourne movie. I soon realized that I had left later than I thought and would not arrive at the theatre until after the show had started. Being O.C.D. and having to be way too early to events so I can feel comfortable and not rushed I wondered what am I going to do instead?

I thought, the bus goes right by the Riverbend Campus of Sacred Heart Hospital here in Oregon which I must say is like a giant sized version of the lodge at Yosemite inside. It is simply astonishing! I will just go to the Riverwalk Cafe upstairs and have lunch overlooking the river instead I thought it would be a nice day for a stroll out back through the forest, on the mile long path that borders the river. I walked out the back door of the hospital and hit the trail and something hit me!

The last time I had been on this trail was thirteen months prior. The last time I was there, I was strung out on methamphetamine and I hadn’t slept for 3 and a 1/2 days. I went there just to isolate myself from the rest of the world and try to disappear from the pain I called my life.

As I walked that trail over a year ago, in my sleep deprived and hateful at the world state of mind, I stopped to have a talk with God. Well, not really a talk, more like I was going to give him a piece of my mind and I did! Oh boy, did I ever! I felt guilt about the things I said to him that day unbeknownst to me up until today!!

I cursed God that afternoon in a very loud and angry voice that drew much attention by the time I was through. I asked him what the fuck the problem was and how did he expect me to be able to live a life and be happy with this horse shit addiction inside of me?

I told him to go fuck himself if he thought it was fair to make a guy have to deal with a life like this. I’ve been trying for 20 years to stay clean but couldn’t, because obviously God thought my life was some kind of joke.

So I said to God again “you think this is funny? Do you really think this is how I want to live my life? I have done everything in my power to make this shit stop, including asking for your fucking help and all you do is shit on me like this, SERIOUSLY GOD, you think this is fucking funny!!?”

I was on that trail in that very spot today with tears streaming down my face today. And the words I am quoting reminded me of everything that I said as I stood there today! I was out of my mind and in so much pain at the time. I had never felt so alone, unloved and completely isolated from all of humanity, as I did that day last year.

I walked out the back door of the hospital this afternoon and my feet hit that trail and I instantly knew why I had run late and missed the movie.

God had brought me back to fix things. He loves me so much that he decided it was time to bring his son back to redo the memory that had been poisoning him from the pit of his soul without him even knowing it. 

I immediately started walking to that same spot as last year. My head was staring down at my feet when I mumbled, “OK God.” 

I walked to the very spot and the sun was amazing. It shined down right between the branches on these two shade trees and made a spot as though he was shining it just on me, and for me alone.

Unlike last year though, instead of there being hurt and pain, when I stepped into that sunny spot, today I was overcome with the most peaceful, loving, calmest feeling I have experienced in all of my recovery attempts. Quite possibly, ever before in my life (and I have tears coming as I write too!)

With tears streaming down my face as I stood there, head still pointed at my feet and completely encapsulated by the love of the spirit, I said in a very humble and quiet voice ” I am so sorry FATHER” and I wept! 

What happened next was even more astonishing!! He did not bring me there to wallow in my sorrow over what had happened between us last year, simply just for that heartfelt truly remorseful apology.

Because he quickly brought me to the real meaning behind this visit. Once I realized it, my tears of sorrow gave way to tears of joy, and I felt a smile begin to crease my face as I looked right up into the sunshine and I said

                              ” IT IS ISN’T IT, IT IS VERY DIFFERENT THIS TIME!”

That is why he brought me today, to show me that even though I will never understand the full reason as to why I suffered in my addiction for so long (all though I have a good idea now).

I was brought there so he could show me how much he has loved me all the way through this and how far I have come now. To remind me of my purpose in life, and to always selflessly share my experiences with this disease, in order to hopefully help another to maybe avoid the despair of trying to take their own life.

So, with my experiences, I can humbly share all of me, and show those still suffering that yes I HAVE BEEN TO THE DEEPEST PART OF HELL, AND MADE IT BACK ALIVE

So maybe, just maybe, they won’t have to pay it a visit themselves!! Another gift that was given to me today simply because I chose to not put a drink or a drug in my body again, for another twenty-four hours. 

                                              MY LIFE IS FOREVER CHANGED

Thank-you MY KING!!