Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, an 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992, when he had a year sober. He's in his 28th year of recovery.

In these posts, he views life mostly through the lenses of recovery. While the blog is factual, he often disguises events and people to protect anonymity.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Another Example

A client who's had a rough time getting sober ended up at a Phoenix hospital the other day after getting hit by a car while drunk. No one was surprised at the news.

One one occasion he was brought to the program after a couple of our clients found him passed out on the sidewalk in over 100° heat. When they picked him up his skin adhered to the concrete. Had he remained there much longer he probably would have died. And the last time he showed up at the program he had bruises all over his body, yet stayed only a few days before he went out to continue where he'd left off.

The idea this man continues to drink in spite of all of the damage he's done to himself illustrates the power of alcohol over our lives. This man is fairly well-educated and has had several good jobs in and out of TLC. He's personable and communicates well. Yet, the fact that he continues to think that he can successfully drink like other people proves one more time that what it says in the book is true. Our disease is "cunning, baffling, and powerful." Who knows when, in an unguarded moment, an overwhelming desire to drink will come upon us?

The solution for those of us who stayed sober for a long time is to adhere to what's suggested in the program. We get a sponsor. We go to meetings. We find a higher power. That way, when an urge to drink or use drugs comes upon us, we have something to fall back on.

All of us pray this man survives, but the last prognosis was not too encouraging.