I spent a few days this week revisiting my past when a relative came to visit from my hometown in California.
It was wonderful to spend time with a family member. And her visit reminded of how fortunate I was to have moved to Arizona over 30 years ago.
The people I knew - those still alive - are doing the same things they were when I left in 1982.
Some are slinging dope. Others are fighting criminal cases or Federal indictments. A few are serving so much time they'll rot behind bars. Some are living on the streets.
And I know that if I hadn't left there I wouldn't be alive. I'd have remained immersed in the drug culture underworld I grew up in. I knew too many people.
Somehow God and fortune smiled upon me though. I got off the bus in Phoenix in July of 1982 with $300 in my pocket. I didn't know a soul, but was still able to find drugs and alcohol. But it was never the same.
Even though it took me another nine years to get sober, I never sunk to the level I was at in California. I made a few half-assed runs at recovery. Until I finally had enough pain to want to change.
And since I made that decision I've been in recovery ever since - almost 25 years.
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