Monday, May 12, 2008

Today my brother accepted his 2 year cake at NA and I attended in support of him. Sometimes I forget just how bad things were just a few short years ago...maybe that's not a bad thing. But it was bad - REALLY bad. The drugs had turned a warm, kind, fun loving person into a rambling, frantic maniac and I'm convinced that he was knocking on death's door. That either he'd die in an accident of some sort or be off'd by a dealer he owed money to. We certainly got the phonecalls telling us so.

Things really came to a head with us during Dad's illness (right before Mom was diagnosed) and I was considering cutting the ties with him as it was easier than watching him kill himself. I had alot on my plate and had to focus on getting Dad through chemo in one piece - I was extremely hurt and angry that he was putting the additional stress on the family. I thought he was being selfish but realize now that he wasn't capable of being anything other than high back then.

And then something clicked. His girlfriend cleaned up and he decided to give it a try and, apparently (according to his own reports), from the first time he set foot in a meeting he felt that he "belonged" there. His girlfriend laughed as she recalled his reaction after that first meeting when he turned to her and announced "I'M AN ADDICT!!". Yeah Dave, we know.

Anyhow, it's a strange feeling sitting in a room full of people who not only did drugs with Dave, but some of whom also dealt to him (and possibly even made some of those calls). Although it's not cool to discuss the details (the whole premise of NA is based on anonymity) those people, when in recovery, are some of the coolest damned people I've ever met. Honest, sincere, no bullshit kind of people and they make it comfortable to be there. The comradery in that room was unbelievable...they've got each other's backs. Heartfelt stories were swapped and they were delivered in an extremely powerful way. There are people of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds that come together - all for the sole purpose of staying clean. Some are business people, others have known only crime and time. They celebrate 30 days of sobriety and some have 27 years under their belts. Some look like they're barely out of puberty and others are well "seasoned" and scary looking. But then you hear them speak and they're teddy bears deep down. They tear up as they talk of their families and what keeps them tight is that they all have the same goal - clean living. They support each other like I've never seen before and it really makes me wish everyone were like this.

I'm extremely thankful for this program and grateful for the wonderful people who make it work. Without it/them, I'm quite sure I wouldn't have a brother. Congrats Dave...I love you and I'm proud of you. I'll always be in your corner and look forward to sharing many more cakes with you.


Blogger Allison said...

What a lovely tribute, Deb. Congratulations to your brother. :)

11:07 AM  
Blogger Deb said...

Thanks Al...I'm thankful to have him. He's an amazing person and to see him like he was was unbearable. I honestly never thought I'd see the day that he'd be "back". In a time that's been extremely difficult, this has been one very big positive to focus on. :)

11:55 AM  
Blogger Barbara Bruederlin said...

How wonderful! Congratulations to Dave. I can't imagine how difficult it must have been, but with someone like you in his corner, that's more than half the battle right there.

12:48 PM  
Blogger Gledwood said...

I'm glad your brother's OK now. I know someone who got bodily beaten up (only punched) for a debt of £40 heroin ie 2 bags most probably less than a g bought separately

did they really give him a cake? That's cool. I've been to NA loads of times. There WAS a time (when I had money to binge enough to put myself off the planet on crack) when I genuinely and wholeheartedly wanted to stop... then the tide went out... inexorably... now I'm back in the worst position. On heroin (a non-binge drug you can only use so much it's the frequency and ever-increasing tolerance not to mention addiction that's the problem)... and only able to buy it as a "treat" meaning the problem gets perpetuated endlessly and this situation is utterly hopeless. I'm thinking of bumping myself OFF all drugs and medication unofficially and just fleeing the country!!

12:55 PM  
Blogger Deb said...

Barb...thank you for your kind words. I'm more than happy to be there for Dave and I really can't believe how bad things were before. It all seems like it was a bad dream. know, different strokes for different folks. One thing was for sure...WE couldn't do anything for Dave. He just wasn't ready and didn't want it and all the love/support/nagging in the world didn't matter. It was something that he decided and, as you know, it's never easy. He still battles hard some days but he's getting through. You'll do it too, I know you will.

One of my worst memories (although I didn't know the REAL story at the time) was seeing Dave very badly beaten up - his jaw was broken and he required plastic surgery. He told a bs story about being cold cocked at a party but we're pretty sure it was about a missed drug payment.

11:27 PM  
Blogger Mike M said...

Togetherness is the key to beating it. You have seen the results, Deb.

Congratulations to your brother

4:13 PM  
Blogger Whitenoise said...

Good on Dave, good on you, Deb. You both deserve the success.

6:32 PM  
Blogger TK Kerouac said...

You are such a good sister
Your brother looks hot

I think the drugs and drink bring on bipolar type episodes

Congrats to you and your brother

TK Kerouac's HNT

9:56 AM  

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