"Let Addiction Die First." The words seemed to come out of nowhere. I wrote a note to myself so I wouldn't forget them as I went about my business. Later, on the way home from picking up the Sunday newspaper, I found myself singing a never before heard melody out loud (not caring what passersby might thing). It went, "Da... Da-Da-Da... Da" (I don't know where that came from either). Suddenly I realized that "Da... Da-Da-Da... Da" stood for "Let Addiction Die First."
It stood for that and nothing else.
Whatever could that mean?
I had reached the tipping point many years earlier... that point where addiction affixed itself to the part of my brain that told me I would need alcohol to survive. My survival instinct itself stood imprisoned. By that point, "I" barely existed anymore at all. I had come to believe that I would need a drink to persevere the very pain that my drinking had caused. My brain had reached the point where it needed more alcohol than my body could endure. Multiple hospitalizations escalated. I crashed upon the walls of death repeatedly, nearly crashing through.
The drinking would stop when my body gave out....
How odd that "Let Addiction Die First" had not really been my thought or experience. Delirious on sidewalks and in gutters, emergency rooms had become my interventions.
Somehow, I turned the phrase, "Let Addiction Die First," into "Recovery, Let Us Live." For it was in recovery that my addiction died and it was in recovery that I learned to live. A stern warning, like so many epiphanies, appeared as afterthoughts. As Gertrude Stein once said, "Silent gratitude isn't much use to anyone." I express that here by sharing with others in recovery that the desire to pick up a drink dies slowly, over time, replaced by the new and healthy habits that recovery will instill. The will to live without a drink returns to its rightful place in a drug-free brain, survival instinct cleansed, addiction arrested, the natural order of the brain restored.
"Da... Da-Da-Da... Da... ," "Let Addiction Die First" (or surely I will die). That was the drumbeat that kept repeating in my head. But, eventually, "Let Addiction Die First" slowly morphed as my melody continued. Now, "Recovery, Let Us Live" is the tune I hear, sing it how you will, your song.
"Recovery, Let Us Live." It will blossom. It will thrive.
Excuse the rhyme, for here I add, I'm glad to be alive.
"Recovery, Let Us Live. Recovery, Let Us Live. Recovery, Let Us Live."
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