On this sunny day, all seemed to be right in the world—the rest of the world at least. As I slumped in the passenger side of my father’s truck, the darkness that had begun to manifest itself inside me years before now seemed to have overtaken my entire existence. In my mind, I searched aimlessly for comfort, but I was met with pain and confusion around every corner. My toes curled with each attempt to open my eyes. I was in full withdrawal from opiates. The drugs that at one time in my life had provided me with a sense of pleasure and sustenance had now turned on me once again.
Barely able to crack my eyes, I looked out the window and noticed some people driving next to us. As I started to drift, I noticed something. The man and the woman inside the car were smiling and laughing with each other. At that moment, I realized how long it had been since a smile crossed my lips. I knew they had something I so desperately wanted. Glancing away, I wondered if I was ever going to come out the other side. Little did I know the desperation I felt was a necessary ingredient for my recovery.
I soon arrived at BRC Recovery. My journey began immediately. I saw something working in other people that I wanted. I knew I had exhausted all my options and my desperation for a new life fueled my willingness to try something new. My ideas no longer worked, but I saw the God idea working in the men around me. I dove into the 12 steps with a new hope that I might actually be able to get sober this time. As the days passed, I began to uncover an old idea that had taken new shape. I began to feel a new power flow in and felt at perfect peace and ease despite my circumstances. I was growing in understanding and effectiveness as I continued to seek God with every new day. The murky shadows had been lifted and were replaced by the Sunlight of the Spirit. God was doing for me what I was never able to do for myself.
Today the obsession to use has been removed and I walk hand-in-hand with my Creator. My life has been filled with gratitude and appreciation. I get to work with other addicts and see the light turn on in their eyes. I get to experience what life truly has to offer all while being a part of a much bigger picture. Today I smile and laugh on a daily basis and get to enjoy true friendship. All this has come from taking a few simple steps that connected me to a power greater than myself. I know now that desperation is truly a gift; it just depends on what we do with it.
Michael K. Kerr is a recovered drug addict and alumna of BRC Recovery living in Austin TX. He currently works full time as a RST at The Arbor Recovery Center. You can email Mike at firstname.lastname@example.org.