Friday, November 25, 2016

TOMBSTONE SOBRIETY

     The day after Thanksgiving and I'm thinking about those I've known in the program who went out again, used, and died. It reminds me of something I heard years ago at a meeting: "Every time history repeats itself the price goes up."
     If you've been the route of addiction, recovery, and relapse, you are familiar with the relapse price schedule. The last few items on the cost sheet are read out at the beginning of every Narcotics Anonymous meeting: "Jails, institutions, and death."
     Why does this need to be pointed out and repeated until everyone becomes bored by the repetition? That's because the disease of addiction talks to addicts and is articulate, entertaining, and clever in doing so. Addiction first tells you that you haven't got it. Then it tells you it wasn't so bad. Then it starts moaning about all the friends and fun you're missing. And somewhere along the line it coaxes you into thinking life is too dull or painful to endure without help. Finally it convinces you that one drink or one drug won't hurt.
     Take a lesson from John F. who stumbled into my home group, The Dragon Slayers in Farmington, Maine, attended meetings, got clean, entered counseling, and after one particular counseling session went to our meeting and shared with us that his counselor had recommended to him that he go to drug rehab. After sharing that with the group, he asked for feedback. Short version, we all agreed with his counselor. He definitely needed to go to rehab.
     He said he needed to think about that.
     Three nights later, he went to a bar, got drunk, got into a fistfight, and was beaten to death.
     Be careful out there brothers and sisters. The dragon never sleeps and there is nobody using down in the graves.

No comments: