So today was another sunny day. I am totally getting spoiled this year. We have really dodged the “gray bullet” that is, the endless days of 40’s and drizzling that seem to be the signal that fall, winter and spring have arrived. Summer begins in mid-July and lasts about 2-4 weeks (ba-dum-pah). This is otherwise known as the PNW lament.
Moving on from my attempt at local humor, I wrote a blog post recently about relapse. Reading over it, I found it a bit “choppy” to say the least. Sorry. I guess voice to text over my mobile phone is not the most effective posting tool. So I will likely avoid that process in the future. My core message is sound, however and I am committed to loving those that are pushing forward in their recovery, despite setbacks.
Let me expand this. Or unpack it, as someone I used to know would say.
Many times, when we hear a thrilling, or inspiring story or testimony of redemption or recovery, the person telling it will give the same general framework. That is, I had some hard things happen in my life, I made some poor choices or someone else made poor choices that caused dysfunction in my life, but ever since I joined (fill in the blank here) and began to work my program, I have seen a victory over my (fill in the blank). I continue to grow and life just keeps getting better.
But what about a few years down the road? When the “pink cloud” or first blush of recovery has faded, and the hard work of living it every day kicks in? When the original problem that brought you through the doors of your first meeting, battered and bruised has faded, and now you find it was covering up a whole lot of other things you now must face? I too have felt the dimming of the fire in my heart, the apathy that sets in when the horrific pain and sorrow has been alleviated (note: I said alleviated, not eliminated).
But soon, the pain returns, seemly worse than before and unless I have all my tools in the ready to battle against the urge to hide in the forest of dysfunction, I will end up in relapse. Where did this process begin? It began when I allowed apathy and complacency room in my heart. When I thought “things aren’t that bad.” True, they weren’t bad, but that didn’t mean they were all better. That’s the thing about pervasive addictive behaviors. They never get “all better”, at least not as far as I have seen.
I am sure many would argue different points of view on this, but I can only speak to what I have seen and experienced. That is part of why this blog is here. My experience. Yours may be different, and there is plenty of room out there for blogs with other points of view. One thing I do know. I love people that are trying to get and stay well from their addictions. I am praying for them and I am ever hopeful. For all of us.