Addiction: The Story (Part 5)

To new readers and followers of my blog, it will become obvious that I hold nothing back when it comes to my life before and since recovery from addiction. I became aware many years ago that the power of truth and transparency would set me free from my damaging secrets and false ego. I believe that real recovery from sunstance-use as well as other addictions begins with a bold paradigm shift inside. I have helped clients focus on discovering their real selves as well as their supressed feelings, desires, goals, and ambitions. Recovery and sobriety eluded me for many years, just as it did for hundreds of clients I have guided on the path to true freedom and release from worry and despair. The truth, in all it’s sometimes ugly reality, is that human beings have made mistakes in their life. Addiction to mood-altering substances became a multiplier of those mistakes for most of us. The most powerful step in real recovery is dependant on acceptance of our mistakes. An understanding that the stigma of embarrasing and guilt-ridden addiction behavior is a road block to freedom from the very illness that we wish to recover from. Things we’ve done in our mind-bending addiction episodes are not attributed to moral failings. These mistakes are simply symptoms of the brain disease of addiction. My message to all of you who wish to end your damanging relationship with drugs and alcohol is that you move toward self-forgiveness of your past so that you can enter a new season in life. My recovery began when I understood that I had to be willing to empty the heavy backpack of shame I carried before I could become the sane and sober person I was meant to be. This idea is the foundation of my Recovery Journey Addiction Freedom Course. There are some shocking details in my story “The Fall’, and I hope that you understand the necessity for my candor. My story takes me from a hopeless, sellfish, and even criminal-minded soul, to a committed professional on a mission to lead fellow sufferers to a new and wonderful reality. I hope that sharing my story provides evidence that even the worst of the past can lead to a life of caring, understanding, and a desire to love and help others. The following events are true, names were changed or omitted to protect the many innocent victims. Love, gratitude, peace and respect go out to the unnamed in this story including those who remained unrecognized and unknown to me. My efforts at healing and making amends to those identified began nearly 26 years ago and continues …    

“The Fall”

Part 5

Now comes the chapter that I call “the precipitous fall”. This one would happen without the safety net that had always been stretched out to catch me on the way down. My willpower to stay clean and sober was a pitiful challenger to the powerful foe I faced. My disease of addiction, all powerful in itself, was benched for only a short while. I was like the little Dutch boy with his finger in the dike holding back the water to stop the flood of destruction. My problem was that unlike the classic tale of heroism by Mary Mapes Dodge, I had never let a kind villager or a set of instructions I might have used as tools to success, rescue me and hold back the eventual crumbling of the leaky dike. The mother of all tsunamis had begun to form offshore and was headed my way. I began the with a sneaky drink here and the detour to a coke dealers house there, and in short order I was using my old lies and alibis again. It did not matter how much clean and sober time I had cobbled together, I found myself in full-blown relapse again. The divorce papers were served along with a restraining order. The previously patient employer gave me the boot, and I began floating bad checks to my “friends” at the liquor stores. The wave was growing, now I remember that at this point, I knew only bad things were coming and I gave in completely to the only escape left for me. I knew I could count on drugs and alcohol for respite, however temporary. Obtaining more coke and vodka was becoming a serious challenge, I was suddenly behind on the rent in a 600 square foot garage apartment, bad checks were nipping at my heels, and my parents insisted they were out-of-bounds for me. As the word of warrants and snooping marshals came to my attention, I was faced only with the fight or flight option. Flight it would be. I zeroed out the credibility I had left with the family name in my small deep south hometown community by passing worthless paper for a car and a trunk full of booze and candy. I only remember that I floated another $2430 in bad checks for cash because years later I made financial amends to those victims. By this time in the story my first wife had died in a tragic house fire leaving me as the custodial parent to our 7-year-old son. As additional evidence of the hold addiction had on me, my son’s wellbeing didn’t figure into my self-destructive plan. Many people I have worked with over the years admit that they don’t understand how their thinking was so wrong at times. Why did they make the choices they made and come to me filled with self-hatred and shame around their behaviors. An awful truth and relative example of this is the fact that I stooped so low as to only agree to sign over custodial rights to my son’s grandparents if they wrote me a (good) check for my upcoming “travel expenses”. Out of pure fear for his safety and total exasperation they paid me, and I headed west. Now on the run in the truest sense of the word, I think I could hear the sounds of that giant wave behind me, gaining speed and strength by the moment, intent on crashing me to oblivion. I believe by this time I was ready for the end, but the drugs and alcohol were a complete obsession in my very small life. I suddenly remembered an old friend With a fine home and great reputation who lived near the mid-west of the country and I remembered that he and his wife had for years built on a tradition of hosting a large multi-day celebration at their home over the memorial day week, so even though I had not spoken to either of them in several years, I decided I would invite myself by showing up. I used lies and alibis to explain my presence and was welcomed with open arms! They had open bars staffed with white coated bartenders in and outside their home, by the pool, and scattered across their large horse-breeder ranch under gazebos and various pavilions. I was graciously invited to stay in one of their 8-bedroom suites while hundreds of their friends and others were in and out over several days. I drank their expensive booze and was pretty adept at seeking out the coke snorters that appeared here and there. For me, this seemed like the greatest find ever! On the second day I set my sights on a woman, she was introduced as a close family friend and had recently lost her husband to cancer. She was obviously lonely, tender, and definitely at risk in a world where I existed. I preyed on her emotions, lied, cheated and stole my way into her finances while hiding the facts of who I had become and that I was not who I seemed to be. I certainly kept my $300 a day coke injecting habit a secret for as long as I could. This part of the story can get long, but the end result was that I stole from her and her family business, I schemed enough to settle into this new area and locate the best drug sources and dark bars. She went to work every day and I went through her things every day. I have had 26 years to think it through and I have come to believe that she had figured out that I was not the person I portrayed weeks before she confronted me. My standards had become so low that feeding my addiction by any means available ranked at the top of my short list of priorities, no matter who was affected. She passed away a few years after my debauchery and I was never able to attempt a personal amends to her. However, I was given three suggested choices by a mentor years later for how I could take some action in the spirit of amends in an effort to do whatever I could to make things as right by her as possible. I did all three. I will present more of what I know to be critical information for your consideration in the next blog. Stay tuned.

Be safe and care for one another.

Coach Chris

As a trained professional in the field of substance-use recovery, a practicing recovery coach, and more importantly, a person in successful recovery from addiction for over 26 years, I have some knowledge to share and lots of hope for anyone who’s ready for change.  

The Recovery Journey to Addiction Freedom Online Course is Now Available as a Fully Digitized and Interactive Program Experience on All Mobile Devices and Computers.

Recovery Begins With Acceptance and A Commitment to Coach Chris’s 21 Day Self-Paced At-Home Course. This Amazing Course was Developed over Many Years with the Coach’s Experience as a Trained and Licensed Addiction Counselor and 3 Professional Coaching Certifications. This Solution-Focused Course Is Not Like Costly Rehabs or Treatment Centers, Does Not Require Group, In-Person, or Virtual Sessions. Includes Daily Coaching Videos, Medical Expert Video Interviews, Celebrity Recovery Video Interviews, Self-Searching Worksheets and Interventions, Relapse-Proof Guidelines, Early Recovery Craving Solutions, Safety-First Guidelines, Daily Relaxation and Wellness Video Productions, Goal and Intentions Worksheets, Art Therapy Modules, and many more Interventions in Perfect Order and Alignment for a Full and Sustainable Journey to Freedom from Addiction to All Mood-Altering Substances. CLICK THE LINK BELOW TO GET STARTED TODAY


The Recovery Journey 21 Day Program


Recovery Journey: Navigate to Addiction Freedom YouTube Channel


Asking for Medical Help

If you or someone you know exhibits withdrawal symptoms, psychological problems, or any signs of self-harming behavior, contact your medical professional, call 911, or reach out to SAMHSA’s National Helpline – 1-800-662-HELP (4357)

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published.