“Think of being curled up, and floating in the darkness. Even if you could think, even if you had an imagination, would you ever imagine its opposite; this miraculous world. The Asian Daoists called it 10,000 things. And, if the darkness just got darker, and then you were dead. What would you care? How would you even know the difference?”
~From the indie film Jesus’ Son
This is a goal that obviously won’t be possible until i’ve finished my education, but i’ve gotten started on it in the meantime. I have a few friends & colleagues who have problems with addiction, and i’ve been counseling them during their recovery. The people in my social circle aren’t receptive to extreme programs such as AA or NA, but they are committed to getting clean. One is in the methadone program, and the other is battling a less severe addiction without a program. I act as a sponsor for both and am in daily contact with each of them.
My friend in the methadone program had some trouble at first, but has now gotten in control of things. I’m keeping a close watch on the methadone though, because it is easy to become a lifelong methadone user without proper guidance. He’s now back in touch with his family, working full time, and out of trouble with the court system. The other guy, who I work with, was prescribed painkillers for a work related injury 8 months ago, and i’ve finally convinced him that he no longer has a legitimate medical condition requiring painkillers. The problem is that most doctors will continue prescribing meds because it means they have a patient who must visit (and pay) on a regular basis. Both of the guys have a long road ahead, but at this point i’m really encouraged by their progress.
In any case, it feels good to be able to help others overcome the issues that I faced. Addiction is a very complicated problem, and although helpful, most of the available programs are inadequate. I’m doing my best to support them in the ways that the programs are lacking. I know I have much more to learn as far as graduate work goes, but my continuing education & the experience that I have with addiction & recovery will hopefully allow me to help them get on the right path.