I went with my sponsor, from NA, and another mate from our Stellenbosch home group, to the NA meeting in Camps Bay. Today marks my sponsor’s eighteen month anniversary free from drugs and alcohol, and together, we are joined in the journey back to life. She is the one I call when life throws me a curve ball, and she is the one who guides me through the steps, explaining the path, the message and the tasks and rewards as I go.
At the meeting, we got to hear a share by a fellow addict who today has been clean for twelve years. TWELVE years – and yet today was a bad day for her, and she “felt shit” about life. As she shared, though, it was quite clear that she was just having an off day – she wasn’t resentful, and isolating, and questioning why she should bother – all these are hallmark qualities of junkies who do not know where the journey is leading them. Correction – I cannot speak about other junkies – only myself…in my darkest times, those days of loss, and sadness and solitude – which were all self-imposed – I resented life, for moving on without me; I isolated in the belief that life would come back, looking for me (it didn’t – I have had to run to catch up!) and I questioned why I should bother living a clean and honest life, when so few people do. Shit days equated to a shit life, in my head. I killed the feelings with more drugs. Good days – because there were many of these, in my active addiction – were selfish days, but I could give enough of myself to the world that it would respond with friends and invitations and love and life. But on these days, I also killed those emotions with drugs. My emotions were chemical, external, contrived – they did not originate from within me. They were not mine. But still, I felt them, nonetheless.
This person – this inspirational, heroic waif of a woman, sharing her 12 years of recovery, is the sponsor to my sponsor’s sponsor – she is my great grand sponsor, then, if you will. Through my amazing sponsor, clean for 18 months, I am connected to this fantastical being, who has continued to overcome her demons every day, for 12 years.
This is family. This is legacy.
© Dave Luis 2012. All Rights Reserved.