Recovery Connections

John Schwary is CEO of Transitional Living Communities, a 850-bed recovery program he founded in Mesa, Arizona January 9, 1992 when he had a year sober. He's in his 27th year of recovery.

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

Friday, December 18, 2015

The Addict LIfe

Today I get sad news of a distant relative who's on a respirator. The details are sketchy. But the report is that it's something to do with alcohol and drug use - maybe bath salts. The outlook's not good.

It's sad because I remember him as a baby. I recall him as a six year old riding a bicycle and doing the other things kids did in the ghetto where he was raised. I remember him as a teenager, when he first started drinking and using drugs. I knew his family, most of them addicts and alcoholics. I partied with them and did time with them. And almost all of them passed away still active in their addictions.

The last time I saw him was at the funeral of one of his uncles. By then he was in his forties and showing the effects of drinking and drugging. But like most of his family he never showed an interest in changing. He was content doing what he was doing.

And now, here he is in his mid-fifties and on life support.

His story reminds me that unless we get into recovery our lives never get better. All I can do is pray that he survives.