A medication aimed at fighting cocaine addiction failed in clinical trials recently. Things like this make me really think about my addiction and recovery. If I was offered a medical “cure” for my addiction, would I take it? Would I stop my involvement in recovery and being of service to other addicts and alcoholics and just take a pill? I don’t think so. When I think of the life I have in recovery, I know that most of the fulfillment in my life comes from the community I have built around myself. Treatment introduced me to a whole new way of life.
When I first went to adolescent Drug Treatment, all I could focus on was figuring out how to not use drugs. I couldn’t think of much else. As time went by, I began to learn that in order to stay clean, I had to change a lot of things about myself; recovery was going to take a lot more than not using drugs. I began to want to be a better person. When I was using, I damaged the relationship I had with my family. I wasn’t trustworthy. I never did what I said I was going to do. I messed up in school and brought a lot of chaos into my home. In rehab, we learned how to become better sons and daughters, siblings, and friends. When I, I got more involved in 12-step fellowships and began to give back what was given to me. I speak on panels at rehabs, sharing my experience, strength, and hope. I work with young people in treatment and in meetings. I try to set an example. One of the coolest things to me about recovery is that we are all trying to be better people. A pill treating the physical side of my addiction wouldn’t give me a reason to try and be better person, or to build the fantastic relationships I have in my life today. Rehab gave me more than a life free of drugs and their consequences; it gave me a new way to live.
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