I must preface this post by saying that I don’t mean to be a pessimist, or Scrooge, I just feel that being in the ‘throws’ of the holidays its important to remember (for myself, I can’t speak for all my sober friends;), that my addiction is ALWAYS lurking. It is always waiting for a weak moment. It is always ready to pounce if I become to complacent.
I came across the following ‘letter’, that was given to me during my outpatient therapy almost a year ago. It is a difficult piece to read, and unfortunately I can relate to much of it. Perhaps that is why an uneasiness settles in the pit of my stomach every time I read it. I’ve been ‘there’ and not that long ago.
The author is unknown, their words humble me with each reading…
Dear Friend, I’ve come to visit once again. I love to see you suffer mentally, physically, and spiritually. I want to make you restless, so you can never relax. I want you jumpy and nervous and anxious. I want to make you agitated and irritable, so everything and everyone makes you uncomfortable. I want you confused and depressed so that you can’t think clearly and positively. I want you to hate everything and everybody-especially yourself. I want you to feel guilty and remorseful for all the things you have done in the past. I want to make you angry and hateful toward the world for the way it is and the way you are. I want you to feel sorry for yourself and blame everything but me for your present condition. I want you to be deceitful, untrustworthy, and to manipulate as many people as possible. I want to make you fearful and paranoid for no reason at all. I want to be in your dreams. I want you to wake up all hours thinking of me. I want your home life to be miserable. I want you to constantly be in financial difficulty. I want to take away your ambition and desire to succeed. Should you win, I want you to come back soon, thinking you will win more, so I can take your last dollar and start the downward spiral again. I want you to borrow and steal from family, friends, and financial institutions so I can destroy those relationships. I want you to sell the things that are dearest to you, for me. I want you to ignore your family for me. I want you to commit or consider commiting illegal acts for me. I deeply appreciate how much you have sacrificed for me. The countless jobs and fine friends you deeply cared for-you gave up for me. And what’s more, the ones you’ve turned against yourself because of your inexcusable actions-I’m even more grateful. And especially -your loved ones- your family, the most important people in the world to you -you even threw them away for ME. I can not express in words the gratitude I have for the loyalty you have for me. You sacrificed all these beautiful things in life just to devote yourself completely to me. But do not despair, my friend, for on me you can always depend. For after you lost all the things you once held dear, you can depend on me to take even more. YOU can depend on me to keep your mind, body, and soul in a living hell- for I will not be satisfied until you are dead.
Forever yours, Your addiction
Powerful stuff… Thank you to whomever wrote this difficult, but brutally honest piece. I am grateful to have read this, shared this, and yes, even lived this. I do not want to ever forget where I came from, respect the past, but gratitude and humility fills my heart to know that I don’t have to go back. I have the power to make that choice.