From: Hot Springs , AR
Addiction: Close to Home
My name is Vicky, I am a recovering addict. I will always have the disease of addiction. I will not let it take control of my life ever again. I must work daily, sometimes a minute at a time, to stay clean. Addiction to me is being unable to live without choosing drugs. I chose drugs over EVERYTHING in my life. I loved my children, grandchildren, parents, and my family with all my heart. But I did not love myself. It was a continuous nightmare, every second of my life. Addiction was my life. It was a love that I had never felt. It made me feel whole and complete, I was content if I was putting it into my body.
I no longer must wear long sleeves when it is a heat index of 110. I no longer must do unbearable things to get what I want. I am no longer a prisoner of the disease of addiction. I have found a new way to live. I have now learned myself worth. I can look at myself in the mirror and love who I see. Addiction has no mercy.
Addiction to me is a mixture of both Nature and Nurture. Yes, my parents were addicts, but my siblings are not all addicts. If I had to name one thing that could have saved me when I became addicted, I would say love. However, some people get all the love in the world and still become addicts. Today, I do not blame anyone or anything for my addiction as it has made me who I am. I no longer must play victim. I embrace my journey and am grateful for every bit of it. What I know now is that drugs are not the problem, we are the problem. The problem is inside of us. Our addict behaviors, addict thinking, our perception.
What the world needs is more people who understand addiction and accept it so we can then work on how to fix it. Noone can be helped if they do not want to be helped. But if we try to let them know we understand, it gives them a little more hope. I am pursuing a degree in Social Work or Addiction Studies so that I can give back to society what I once took from it. I want to help others. Even if it is only a handful, it still counts. No one should have to die from this disease. There are programs. I am proof that addiction does not have to control our lives.