Today makes the 8th month of me being clean and sober. I have started a brand new year, clean and sober. Though I have come a long way so far, such as publishing a few publications, quitting substance abuse, alcohol, cigarettes, and continuing my education–I know there is still more work to be done. I understand that it is a process, but I can’t even begin to express the difference quitting substance and alcohol abuse has had on me. I can’t explain how it has affected me, the actual me, the real me that was hidden underneath everything that way of dying, not life, entailed. Though I have written a novel that probably poorly explains the possibilities and the experiences of what an alcoholic/addict might go through, I know it doesn’t even begin to touch the tip of the iceberg. There are many authors that have done an excellent job in giving people a glimpse into the lives of addiction. The truth is, it is all around us and even in some of the people that we love. It is a near invisible enemy that you would never suspect. Some of the people you would have never thought were addicts, quite possibly, could be. I’m not saying this to imply that certain people are addicts, I’m only trying to draw some small awareness to it. These people are still people, but while suffering from substance abuse, are a shadow of their former selves.
So to the recovering addicts and alcoholics I want you to know that I am proud of you. And to the persons still suffering from addiction, I want you to know that I love you. I want you to know that you are worthy of love. You do not have to punish yourselves any longer. You have all the strength you ever needed, you have all of the willpower you could ever hope to gain, you have all the “stuff needed” to quit your addiction(s). You do not have to be a slave to your addictions. Change can be scary and even hard, but change is not always bad. I know exactly what it is that you’re going through, because I have been there. We are all united, you and I, addicts and recovering addicts, we have shared the same pains, we have shared the same experiences. We are all brothers and sisters united through our lives of addiction. I know the pains of withdrawals. I know the pains of riding the monster. Look at me, and look to others in your life that you know have overcome and beat the demon–it is possible. You are just as capable as anyone else. Never quit, quitting. You have the power to quit, and you will, when you truly want to. You do not have to be alone in your recovery. There is help, and there is nothing wrong with asking for or needing help. You will find that being ‘interdependent’ is a lot more fun than being in ‘codependency’ or being ‘dependent.’ Be the best version of you that you can be and everything else will follow.