I was born on the South Coast of England into a devoutly Catholic working class family; there was a lot of worship and Anger in that house and the surrounding environment.
At thirteen I picked up my first drug, but even before that I can see now that I already had the disease, I was always searching, always ill at ease. Speed took me out of myself and sufficed for a while until I found hash and LSD again these where good for a while but not enough then I discovered opiates, that did the trick and fast, it took me to oblivion and I made that home. I was in and out of prisons and hospitals for the next 12 years, travelled around parts of Europe and can barely remember any of it.
At the age of 25, I had a realization that I was dying, a spiritual awakening and I stopped using and gradually built a life that was to be good for the next 19 years. By this time I was (and still am) in Melbourne Australia running a small business, had a good relationship and a nine year old daughter. I started drinking and within a few years had lost my relationship and business and had damaged my relationship with my daughter. I drank for 11 years, wasted millions of dollars eventually lost my house, damaged my relationship with my daughter and thought I had killed my spirit. I drank so much every day that my spirit poured out of my ears! In those last two years I had a TIA a small stroke, a warning from which I recovered and kept drinking, nothing stopped me, I tried to kill myself in my car by aiming it at a tree and was so drunk missed the tree, slid into the ditch and awoke hours later with a hangover and a few bruises. Actually I was always covered in bruises from falling over and walking into things.
21st May 2005 I awoke as if from a nightmare feeling very sick as I usually did in the mornings, but sicker on this day as I got a good look at myself and realised I was “there” again, alone and probably not too long for this planet. That day I found an online forum and talked to people there all weekend, I have not stopped talking to them since then. On the Monday I went too my first AA meeting, sat at the back, and shook with the DT’s and of course hated it but my heart took me back the next day and the next.
I was very sick but as the days past I got better physically. I tried living without meetings after a few months and experienced the full madness of my disease without getting drunk, that was a big shock too and I was completely powerless to change or fight it. A friend got me back to a meeting and since then I have been to a meeting every day.
As an addict I have to learn to balance everything, for instance I could not even get the number of meetings right, from none to two or three a day and then realizing that I needed to be “in life” so moderating the number of meetings I do to keep me moving forward. Basically I am learning most things anew and that’s ok, in fact that’s great.
In the last 6 years much has happened, I have had and lost work, have faced all my creditors and arranged to pay them, the bank was a sticking point and I was forced to declare financial bankruptcy, separated myself from anyone or anything that has no place in my life and connected or re-connected with old friends. My relationship with my daughter gets better all the time, day by day. I have never had so many phone numbers in all my life, that gnawing empty feeling in my gut that had been there since early days has gone. I take things a lot slower and face my feelings as they arise and no longer live in terror and rage as I did for so many years. I have gone through the steps with my sponsor and continue to live the spiritual principles of the NA program on a daily basis and practice the spiritual principles of the NA program, as well as continuing to go through the steps with my sponsor.
But all of that does not describe in anyway what being clean 6 years with NA to draw from.
I am liberated, sure I still get obsessed, I obsess about many things but these days I look at it as a way to understand my disease and practice at not taking any negative action. So even if I see the biggest bestest Puter or Car or some other gadget these days I don’t buy it. My disease sting rings my bells in many different ways as it is truly cunning powerful and baffling but the difference today is that I don’t react and it is only a matter of minutes or hours before using the tools I have been given I am able to let it go.
I go to the gym and ride my bike, run in Marathon’s and other races and am fit after 3 years of doing this and there is a bounce in my step and in my heart that has never been there before.
Spiritually I have no doubt about my HP’s hand in many things everyday. I talk to my HP every day and look for guidance everywhere so that I may do his will as Calvin’s will don’t work for me or anyone else, it only takes my back to that living nightmare and being a member of the walking dead.
I have am still learning every day, but I have no sense of alarm or panic rather one of acceptance and peace as I am in the right place doing the right things the best I can. I am grateful for the wonderful life I have today, the fantastic friends, the freedom to do as I choose, the peace of mind and the love I have for myself finally and because of that the love I am able to have for others.
Recently I met a woman and had an experience I have never had before, it’s early days but I am in love, maybe for the first time ever and I am just so alive and enjoying it, totally aware that it is what it is right now.
Who would have thought that a few months away from 60, 6 years clean and I am free from the bondage of drugs, free my the trap of my disease living a simple and blessed life and now I have fallen in love.
If you’re struggling as I was 6 years ago, there is always hope, if you don’t feel it than join with us and let us love you back to life, in time you will feel hope and so much more.