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.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Still on his Way

He's been sending emails for about four months. Says he wants help. He's still heading this way. But can't figure out how to get here. Can't get a ride. Can't afford a ticket.

Some of the emails start out coherent, then the writing becomes jumbled. Then unreadable. Each sentence looks like a different person wrote it. He surely was drinking when he wrote it. Then the alcohol overtakes him and he goes out of focus.

He sometimes mentions that if he keeps drinking he knows he'll die. And when I don't hear from him for a few weeks I wonder if that's what happened. I imagine him lying dead somewhere in a pile of empty bottles.

When I get his messages I sometimes go back twenty five years. I remember the feeling of drifting aimlessly. The demoralization of being homeless. Wondering where I might find food. Or a warm place to hang out for a while. It was a sad existence.

He's asked us to help him get here. But we don't go much further than 25 or 30 miles to pick someone up. We can't afford to send bus tickets. We'll let people in without funds. But they have to get here on their own.

When I get his emails it reminds of why we do what we do. We exist to help those lost in their disease. No matter how broke they are we'll help them. They just have to get here.

Click here to email John