COURAGE: Theirs and Ours

My son wrote this in Stay Close about getting and staying sober: I was terrified – faced with getting clean, again. With nothing but failed attempts to reference, sobriety felt impossible. It’s far easier to want to change your life than actually to do it. Following through with the process takes total courage and I was scared to my bones.

My reflection on the above passage: Dr. MacAfee says, “We know about addiction, but what we don’t know much about is the impact of abstinence.” He explains, “Addicts know how to live in addiction – in chaos, with court systems and legal problems. They know how to lie, deceive, and manipulate. What they need to learn how to do is live a transparent life – how to live clean and honest, how to live with serenity.”

Both addiction and recovery are traumatic. MacAfee explains that when the using stops a period of grief for all the lost time, the years gone by, the people hurt, the trail of destruction is inevitable. He said, “The grief will overtake you, Jeff, and it will be hard. But it’s also a sweet time. Savor it.”

Today’s Promise to consider: It takes courage to change: courage for the addict and courage for the parent. Today I will have the courage to change the things I can. Instead of pointing out how others need to change, I’ll start with me.

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Sandy Blodgett
Sandy Blodgett
11 years ago

I have read your book “Stay Close”…. it is WONDERFUL!’ Painful, yes, but I have lived it with my own son. You were such an inspiration to us. Thanks over and over again. Sandy Blodgett

Libby Cataldi
Libby Cataldi
11 years ago

Dear Sandy,

Thanks for reaching out. You’re so right – our story is painful, but as Jeff says, “Writing the book was painful, but living it was worse.” With addiction, we all suffer: addicts and parents and families….and the list goes on.

My love to you,

Libby

Mary A.
Mary A.
11 years ago

This is such an appropriate inspiration for me for today. My daughter might not be able to get her diploma until she goes to summer school for her English class. I will not know until next week. The school will allow her to participate in the graduation ceremony. But I have decided that if she does not pass her english class, even if she decides to participate in the ceremony, I will not attend nor will I send invites out to the family. I will wait until she actually gets her diploma after summer school.

Thank you so much for sharing your story. Thank you to Jeff and Jeremy, too. I am going through this with my 18 year old daughter, and reading your book was so inspirational to me.

Pat Nichols
Pat Nichols
11 years ago

I focus on each day and the serenity it can offer me if I allow it. I ask myself, “What will give me the serenity I seek?” Then I do it!

Our children must find the intrinsic motivation that the disease has stolen from them. That is why recovery is a spiritual journey and a life worth living is found in God.

In prayer for all who suffer from this disease.

Gina DeCosimo
Gina DeCosimo
11 years ago

This inspiration spoke to me today. I sure needed Jeff’s insight. Sometimes I suffer with only thinking about how hard it is on me (the mom) to change. But I don’t seem to think about how hard it is for my son. Thank you for setting me straight Jeff!! I needed that!!! God Bless you on your journey.

Libby
Libby
11 years ago

Dear Gina, I, too, was locked in my own grief for years. I was resentful, angry and I felt little compassion for anyone including my son. Not until the end, when Jeff and I actually talked – in ‘rigorous’ honestly – did I hear his suffering. Learning all the time. Love to you.