like about my recovery program is learning that I’m not a victim—that I have
choices. My daughter, Angie, is an addict, yes, but I haven’t been victimized
or punished for my sins. Angie is sick; addiction is a brain disease, and she
has the power to fight it. She can choose. Not easily, to be sure, but the
power is in her hands.
By detaching myself sufficiently from the agony of her struggle, I can recognize that I am free to choose too. I can help her, if she wants recovery, but beyond that it’s not my battle. As heartbreaking as that is for any mother—to admit her powerlessness—it’s what I have had to do in order to reclaim my life. I love my daughter, and I pray with all my heart that she chooses recovery someday. But in the meantime, I have many blessings to enjoy and pay attention to.
Even if Angie were my only child, there are still sunsets…
holds so much—so much to be happy about always. Most people ask for happiness
on conditions. Happiness can only be felt if you don’t set conditions.” ~Arthur
another of my favorite quotes: ~Jennie Jerome Churchill: “Life may not be
everything we want it to be. But to make the best of things as they are is the
only way to be happy.”
All of us
in these rooms have experienced addiction in one form or another: in ourselves
or in a loved one. It’s a cruel illness because unlike many serious illnesses
that are incurable, drug addiction is often conquered by the sufferer. Many
addicts recognize that they have the power to change if they are committed to
recovery. Different people have different ways of dealing with it: some use
12-Step recovery, some use prayer, or yoga, or running, or writing things down.
No one way is better than another. Whatever works for you.
is that dealing with addiction is painful and messy. My life was derailed
because of it. But I found a way to recover—from my own addictions as well as
my addiction to saving my daughter, Angie—and I got my life back.
with gratitude everyday for that. And I wish us all the same peace and joy for
to be happy. I learned “to make the best of things as they are.” And that’s
quite a lot!
what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
when my daughter Angie was in early recovery, a doctor we knew told her to
replace the using habit with something else, something healthful. Any habit,
good or bad, takes up time in our lives. When we want to rid ourselves of bad
habits, according to this doctor, we need to replace them with something else
that is pleasurable.
said than done, of course, when drugs are surrendered in favor of something
else. But creating good habits takes commitment, determination and time. Many
addicts give up drugs and rebuild their lives. They just have to stay committed
for all of us caught one way or another in the hellish world of addiction is
that we find a better way to live—a way to live well and be happy.