Lorelie Rozzano is a guest blogger for Vertava Health.
Quit Saying Recovery Is Hard!
If you’ve ever spoken with someone struggling with substance use, you’ll hear they don’t like being sick. Listening to their stories you begin to understand, they’re not having fun. They don’t use drugs to be cool, or impress anyone. They’re not using to upset their family members. By the time they realize they’re addicted, they’re using to maintain. The euphoric high users first felt when they picked up, is long gone. Now they use to feel normal. Or even just to get out of bed in the morning. Addicted people dislike being dependent but the trouble is, they don’t want to work to get clean and sober, either. They suffer from more than addiction. They suffer from fear, magical thinking, delusion and instant gratification. They’re used to things happening fast. They take a pill and feel better right away. An addicted person wants the pay off, now. But recovery doesn’t work like that. Recovery is a process. Substance users come up with many reasons why they can’t go to treatment. I can’t leave my job. My family needs me. Who will look after my kids? I can handle it on my own. I don’t want my family to know I have a problem. I’m too busy to go to treatment. I’m scared of withdrawal. I don’t want to be locked up. There are many excuses keeping addicted folks from getting the help they need, but there’s one excuse I hear over and over again. This one blows me away!
Recovery is hard.
What? Seriously? Recovery is hard? I have a news flash for you. Recovery is not hard. But being addicted, is. In case you forget what hard is, let me remind you. Hard is waking up wondering where you parked your car. Hard is pinkie-swearing with your child you’ll only be gone for two hours, then coming home two days later. Hard is remembering all the lies you told. Hard is running out of drugs and being dope-sick. Hard is your parent’s tears. Hard is breaking hearts. Hard is sunrise. Hard is mornings and getting out of bed. Hard is crawling on the carpet looking for the non-existent chunk, you’re sure dropped there. Hard is convulsing on the floor. Hard is puking your guts out. Hard is shaking so bad you need a straw to drink your coffee. Hard is being pulled over for a DUI. Hard is killing someone in an accident because you’re impaired. Hard is your children asking what’s for breakfast, after you spent all your money on dope. Hard is keeping your addiction a secret. Hard is being locked up in jail. Hard is your family attending your funeral. Hard is drowning in guilt, shame and remorse. Hard is looking in the mirror. Hard is waking up, wishing you were dead.
Still think recovery is hard? For me recovery isn’t hard, it’s life-saving.
Think about all the excuses and time you’re putting into staying sick. If you think you’ll have that job much longer, think again. Successful employees and addiction don’t go together. Most people who struggle with substance use lose their jobs because of their addiction. If you think your family doesn’t know something is wrong, think again. No matter how much you avoid them or deny it, they know. Yes your kids need you. They need you healthy and in your right mind. What they don’t need, is one minute more of watching you kill yourself. You handling it on your own, is what got you into this mess in the first place. Stop trying to be a hero and face the facts. Your addiction is far more powerful than you’ll ever be. It’s winning… so far. But you can even the odds by reaching out for help. You’re not too busy to fight for your life, so start. Quit saying you don’t want to be locked up. Rehab centers aren’t prisons. By the way, don’t kid yourself, you’re already locked up. Addiction owns you lock, stock and barrel. As for your withdrawal, it will be made comfortable. You’ll have doctors, nurses and pain relieving medication to help you through the process. If you’re contemplating sobriety, do it. Take the step. Believe me, it’s all up from there. If you or someone you know needs help, please call this confidential support line for assistance 888-601-8693.