By: Marc McMahon
Do you know it is kinda weird to look back on my old life as an actively using drug addict sometimes? It is like looking back onto another life, someone else’s life, definitely not my life, or was it? I mean I don’t like the guy I used to be. I don’t care for him, no longer want him around, and can hardly believe I was once that person. Almost as if I was living a completely different life. Actually, I was living a completely different life. I was so very different just 3 years ago, so different. I had the same heart but my actions were horrible and I am embarrassed by them, to be honest with you. Sometimes I feel I owe everyone in my past a damn apology just for having met me and that is no lie.
When I look back on who I used to be it kind of scares me today. The things I did, the thoughts I had, the criminal thinking, and immoral behavior. Just so different than today. I am so lucky I have been spared my life and given this new opportunity to live. So blessed for that. You know that doesn’t happen often. When God decides to give a guy a complete pardon and total do-over on his life. Well with the minor stipulation that I pour my heart out here in hopes it can help save another from the devil’s grasp. Or not save that’s not my job, but maybe help in that process a wee bit. Something like that anyway.
I was thinking yesterday back to the last time I was in treatment and all the talk they had about the criminal thinking that goes on in the mind of an addict who is in active addiction and early recovery for that matter. And I can remember of course in all my brilliance that, that simply did not apply to this drug addict and I would turn an unenthusiastic deaf ear to whoever was speaking about it. But yesterday as I pondered the thought I was kind of shocked as to how prevalent that really is. I mean when you’re using and you need cash to get high generally the quickest way to get it is through some illegal means hence the term “Easy Money.”
Then I thought about how my mind works now that I am over the year sober mark and wow, what a difference. Guess what when I have the thought that I need cash and even if I need it quick in recovery my mind does not resort to the criminal. Not even to the take your stuff to the pawn shop thought which for me is amazing because I was the Pawn Shop King just ask my poor mom oh boy! (Love You, Mom.) Today my mind has sort of this sober mind of its own that I know nothing about really because I never used the damn thing before just the criminal part if that makes any sense at all.
What a gift to not only be set free from the drugs and alcohol but the crappy thinking as well. Freedom for sure. You don’t really realize just how screwed your whole thought process gets while using until you have distanced yourself from it a bit and can look at in retrospect as I am now I think. It is really cool once you realize that has changed because it is a sign of tremendous growth I think. At least it is for this recovering addict that is for sure.
Old Habits Hard To Break
I gotta tell you this. All that talk about criminal thinking and how it is gone into recovery now that I have over a year clean. Well, I paused writing this to go see my therapist and as I was leaving to go to the bus stop I noticed something shiny lying in the middle of the parking lot. So my mind takes its measurements and my heart skips a beat as my addict mind apparently determines the size to be about that of a shiny visa credit card. Heart racing in excitement as I take two more steps towards my new treasure when my sober mind kicks in (finally) and reminds me with a. “Hey dumbass, remember the criminal thinking?” Oh ya, that thing well you’re doing it!
Is that crazy or what and that is my higher power showing me ” I should not think of myself any higher than I ought to.” as the good book states. So although the criminal thinking is better, the habit slowly being broken, it is far from gone. What a great reminder that was this morning of how our minds can get ahead of our recovery at times and then that same mind saves the day with what it has learned so far from the recovery. Well, you all stay blessed and until we meet again, I Love You!
About The Author: Marc is a 49-year-old Author, Speaker, and Soldier in a war to loosen the grasp that Substance Abuse has on our society. He is a Father, Son, and friend to all those seeking refuge from this incorrigible disease. Marc resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest where he enjoys, writing, hiking, and kicking the disease of addiction in the teeth, every chance he gets. As Marc always likes to say, “be blessed, my friends!”