Growing up I had this ideal picture instilled in my mind, that to be happy, to succeed I needed to follow the social “normality”. That having the beautiful wife, the kids, the house, the dog, the good job was how it was supposed to be. For me this was my dream, at least I thought so. I wanted to be the best at everything I did, from a young age I always dreamed of being a professional baseball player. And work hard at that I did, day in and day out, practice, practice, practice. But, I always knew something in me was different, something in me just wasn’t right. I had this void that I just couldn’t fill. No matter how hard I worked how much effort I put into things. I just always felt empty.
As addicts, we have this endless empty feeling that we can’t fill for the life of us. Then we discover that a pill, that drug, that drink makes us whole again. At least we think it does, but in reality, it just keeps us from feeling, keeps us from remembering the trauma we have endured in our past and our present. Keeps us from truly showcasing our gifts and our talents. We stuff these feelings, these emotions, that we hate so much down, hoping and praying they will go away with each substance we ingest. Day-in and day-out we search for that feeling, to feel nothing at all.
For years and years, I layered these feelings with drugs and alcohol. With each new day, I became more hopeless. I began to think of an end, I began to think of a way out. What had I become? What happened to me? I once dreamt of a house and a family, and now I dream of not waking up the next day? That once I wake up I have to go through the pain and the suffering of having to feel these feelings, that were so prominent the day prior.
I knew I needed to do something different, I needed to make a change. I found that last bit of hope left within the hopelessness. I began believing in myself, that maybe I was meant to be something other then this rundown junkie with no goals to achieve. I found courage and strength with each passing day. Though it was not easy, I kept grabbing on to that little bit of hope each day, praying that it will take me to the next.
We all have something that haunts us; we all have our own demons that we have to live with. Whether it is one thing or a multitude of situations. In the end it’s how we learn from it, it’s how we find out how to embrace the strength within ourselves to move forward. Finding the hope and the courage to want to be a better person with each new day is a struggle within itself. From personal experience, I can tell you it is not easy, but it is worth it and so are you. Each and everyone us has a gift, how we go about that is up to our discretion.