Every person who is an addict is different. Even if we took all those who are addicted and put them into one category, we could still take them and separate them into groups. Groups like the drug of choice, or we could group them on how long they’ve been addicted. We could put all the males in one and the females in another. Or how about the kids here and the senior citizens there?
As I’ve said before, addiction can happen to anyone. It can be a quick one year event in someone’s life or it can become a lifetime for someone who had bigger dreams. And though I don’t have clear cut answers, I cannot avoid writing on it and how I see it from my experience.
The one thing all addicts have in common is that when the addiction takes hold, the addict lives a day to day existence. Many may put on a front, appearing to live their life and have everything under control. But I guarantee you, on the inside they are only thinking and dwelling on today and today’s high. If the getting is good and the supply is plentiful, then the addict will appear happier, more sure on themself. They may make some plans or agree to invitations from others. But that can change in a day or two’s time depending on the supply. See as long as the addict is using their drug, they have a real hard time thinking beyond today. Their ability to make plans is slowed down due to the constant thoughts of where the next high comes from. Sadly, most plans they made fall through as a result of not having what they need to get through that day.
Because of this, it’s unimaginable to think we should expect any more than today out of the recovering addict. They need to recover one day at a time. The cliché you hear from AA is true. One day at at time is all they can do. Because day 48 of sobriety and day 1 can feel the same.
Today as I drove into our city, I was once again confronted with the homelessness epidemic. I watched a man sleeping on a bench outside of a funeral home. I saw another leaning against the outside wall of a liquor store, strategically in place. I witnessed a young woman with an old woman’s face, stridding down the sidewalk without a care in the world. They are all incapable living outside of today. I’m not profiling that all homeless are addicts, but I’m sure the majority are. And that majority needs love and forgiveness and most of all, prayer. The ones I mentioned and your addicted loved ones could be a writer, a dentist, an architect or even a really good parent.
Even though we must at times protect ourselves from those who want to do us harm, we must remember those who are only harming themselves. That they see no end in sight for their future. We must forgive them, show them the way to God and help them one day at a time.