I WAS A BROKEN SOUL ENSLAVED BY ADDICTION
My name is Jonny, and today, I’m a recovered addict. But five years ago, I was a broken soul enslaved by addiction. Here’s a little of my story…
I was always a dreamer in my early years. I could never commit to anything. I’d pick something up, get bored, and move on to the next big thing in a matter of minutes. I’d bummed through school, gone to college and then managed to blag my way into Uni. Getting to 18 with that illustrious ID, I started to “go out”. Being 1995 I’d caught the arse end of the Rave scene in my teens and 20s, and I prided myself on getting as messy as possible and staying up for as long as I could. I’m not glamorising it, but I had lots of fun in those early years; I really did. Fast forward to my late 30’s. I was proper delusional. I clung to the idea that it was party time to the bitter end. The consequences had caught up with me, and life had become an unrecognisable nightmare, consumed by the all-encompassing grip of alcohol and substance abuse. I had lost friends, fucked my marriage up and nearly lost a relationship with my kids. The isolation I felt was crushing. Addiction had devoured every facet of my existence, leaving me utterly hopeless and emotionally desolate.
Ever more, things really spiralled out of control, and I yearned for a way out. The chaos and despair had become unbearable. I’d been in bad physical shape many times over. I’d sworn off the drink too many times to remember, but this time it was different… Rock bottom had happened between the ears. I was finally done! With nowhere to turn, I reached out for help. Seeing my desperation, a supportive friend encouraged me to my first 12-step meeting. I heard some big truths and some honesty. I didn’t know it at the time, but many people in that room were planting the seed of recovery in their message. I couldn’t speak, I couldn’t share, I was riddled with fear. But I left with a sense of hope and a big book under my arm. My journey started with acknowledging that I was powerless over my addiction. It meant admitting defeat. It was the first time I had truly faced the truth ever in my life!
Believing in a power greater than myself was challenging, as I had lost faith in everything. But my step one was strong. I’d met a man armed with the facts, and through him, I began to see that recovery was possible with faith in something beyond my understanding. That recovery is attainable and begins with the precise program of action outlined in the Big Book, not just meetings.
Surrendering control to a higher power was a pivotal moment. I realised I couldn't do this alone and needed to trust the process. I had to confront my past, my mistakes, and my part in it all. It was painful, but it allowed me to understand the roots of my addiction. This was just the start, though. Knowing wasn’t enough; I had to take action. Take the medicine, as it were. So, I made a list of those I had harmed and made direct amends. Which was/is both humbling and healing. Rebuilding relationships is a profound aspect of my recovery. An absolute gift!
I discovered the power of prayer and meditation in maintaining a solid connection with my higher power. I have a purpose that reinforces my commitment to sobriety. I give back and help others on their journey to recovery as best I can. I love what recovery has given me. I continue to live this life. I reap its rewards. I never take that lightly, though. I reflect on this daily. It helps me stay accountable for my actions and maintains my sobriety. I'm constantly reminded of the profound transformation it has brought into my life - My family’s life. I used to fight with life, but now it feels like I’m spinning in sync with this world. For me, this program isn't just a set of steps; it's a design for living, a guide from the darkest depths of addiction to the radiant light of recovery. It's a testament to the human capacity for transformation and rebirth, offering hope to all who seek it.