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  • Writer's pictureTrisha Rapley

Addiction vs Sobriety by Trisha Rapley...

Updated: Oct 21

Sobriety is something you choose and you have to keep choosing it every day and for the rest of your life.

That's how being sober works and believe me when I tell you it's easier to choose whatever your substance of choice was or is at times because choosing to stay sober is painfully confronting and extremely hard work.

Wounds reveal themselves you've been dodging your entire life and you're forced into the most uncomfortable place you'll ever grace.

We all need to remember not just for our own education but for those suffering from addiction some people don't survive while trapped in addiction and the likelihood of them surviving while trying to come out of it is slim but possible.

If you are sitting with yourself trying to escape the grip your addiction has over you I need you to know that it gets easier as time passes.

The big things like self-worth and self-love form and the strength you prayed for come and replace all the fear of shame you've had inside your soul for so long.

Your memory returns slowly and you will choose to do what's best for you without feeling guilty for it or ever needing anyone's approval to live your life for you, and as the momentum of good choices amplifies so will your confidence and trust in yourself.

Don't get me wrong you may fall down a couple more times before you can be fully addicted but each time something about you will change and you'll stop choosing to be numb just to make it through, instead choosing to feel and ride out all the emotions that are associated with the pain.

It's all part of the process, the falling down I mean and it doesn't mean you've failed it means you're a human and a better human as a matter of a fact because although every single odd was or is stacked up against you you've chosen to continue despite them.

I used every excuse I could to stay in my place of self-loathing stubbornness and self-centred arrogance over doing the work to be a better woman and mother for the longest time - it was easier, or so I thought.

In doing this I was cheating myself and my children of a life we so desperately deserved. That's what we do when we choose addiction over accountability, cheat ourselves, punish ourselves, and deliberately pass the buck to everything that has put us in the place addiction is.

I've heard people say "But they have a job, a nice car, and a beautiful family, why would they not be okay or need addiction. They aren't homeless or haven't lost their kids how does an addict have everything?"

So many times these things have been heard and I'm here to tell you addiction doesn't discriminate.

It will have the richest people so dependent on it - functioning addicts and the poorest of people doing whatever it takes to get their next hit while selling everything they own and their bodies.

Addiction doesn't care how much money you make or what you sacrifice to continue with it, it only cares that you meet it in a place where you can be together and high enough to not care how you got there in the first place.

The environment in which addiction lives is on the greatest of scales sometimes you can see it and sometimes it's invisible but it's addiction.

The ferocity of addiction is the same in each of us and it takes all the goodness from everything you love in this world until you have the courage to stand up and say "It ends now!"

The hunger is real, the urge, the going to whatever lengths to get it, the dishonesty, and the loss we feel without it, are identical in each of us.

No one addict is worse off than the other because we are all fighting the same demon, the same dragon, and the same illness and that's the truth.

It takes one hell of a strong soul to sit in the darkness addiction brings into life and say out loud or to others - I have a problem but the bravest of all of them are the people who stand up and choose to change it.

For me it has been years of education and years of love - self-love that has led me to be here today and without diminishing my own trials or addiction I know someone out there hasn't made it today or is so much worse off than me but it wasn't always like that for me.

I've been homeless more than once, lost countless jobs and been unemployed, absolutely crippled by illness and disease - some of which I still live with today and all from the result of the domino effect of addiction, while finding myself awake for days on end, losing my mind and wanting to take my own life with two failed attempts, in the most dangerous environments where violence and weapons were present, overdosing in bathrooms and on loungeroom floors, and on the verge of losing my children.

But I see myself as fortunate because I am still here to tell my story while so many aren't or can't.

My survival has been driven by the love of my children and for them along with the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ. My faith was put in their love for me, it kept me alive because my purpose for them was always greater than the need to get high.

The saying goes "I'd be dead without my kids!" this is absolutely the truth and what better way to repay the sacrifices they made without ever having a choice to choose for themselves to get sober and stay sober.

"When your will to live overcomes your ability to find a reason to get high recovery begins!"

That reason was "Love" and that's the key, you know, love!

And just like anyone with the lingering dragon/demons inside us it just needs a little love and slowly over time, that love becomes enough and addiction is destroyed. Once love steps in you'll find yourself reaching for ALL things that either give or require love leaving you with a high only love can give.

It's the best way to fill the void addiction takes over when you choose it. Sobriety is no small task and it's a continuous process of acceptance, forgiveness, understanding, and most of all love!

Sobriety is choosing to put yourself first without excuse, without debate, and without pride.

It's not our fault the addiction has taken over our lives at times or is the result of what happened to you in a time when all you could do was survive the best way you knew how but it is our responsibility to make sure it ends with us so that our children or loved ones don't think this kind of behavior is acceptable when life has been unkind to us.

"Addiction will never be the answer, love is"

I'm now dedicated to my promises made to Jesus first, then my children and myself to improve my life by helping others while maintaining healthy ways to deal with the ups and downs life brings.

This may mean at times sitting with people through their addictions or being with someone who is impacted by addiction but not the addict.

That's me in a nutshell and I've always helped others in their addiction even though I was fighting my own addiction because to me not only does my life matter but so does theirs.

It was a no-brainer at times putting others first but my decision was always based on the knowledge that Jesus knew my heart and he forgave my choice to help even when at times it endangered my own sobriety.

My choice to do this cost me, of course, it did - years of setbacks and loss of focus in my own recovery but I wouldn't change a thing. I've seen the miracles it has brought to life and so many people I sat with are either on the path to acceptance or receiving help or are celebrating their sobriety like me today.

In my heart, I knew if I could just save one person from the hell I was also facing it would be worth it! And it was.

What I can take from all of that is the knowledge I gained from helping others in their addiction was what has helped me through mine, in the end, it brought me closer to my children, to my loved ones, and to Jesus. Without my entire journey, my sobriety may never have been possible.

I know all things are through the love and support only Jesus can give. He will always bring people into my life I can either educate or support in whatever they are facing at the time that may not always be an addiction but that's where I'm strongest and He knows that but from now on Jesus gets to decide who I help because when I chose him I chose his ways.

The work on myself, and the recovery of my soul will never end but neither will my will to help others if anything this entire experience has taught us we have to do what we can as long as we are here on the earth just as Jesus did.

The approach will be somewhat different moving forward from here, it will be a "How can I help?" rather than "What do you need?"

Because that's what we are right? The help and when we help ourselves first we can help others. We endure the suffering as addicts not to just survive but to help others in their time of need too.

That doesn't mean risking our own sobriety or removing the very strong boundaries we now have it means doing all the small acts of kindness you knew you needed at the time of your addiction.

Jesus appreciates and congratulates all efforts and He encourages us to do the best we can because it is and always will be enough for Him.

I know that accepting Jesus into our life isn't for everyone and I respect that too but I do encourage anyone who is battling any kind of addiction to know he is the ONLY person who will forgive and love you even when you are in active addiction or high.

Jesus will sit with you in those times, he'll never judge or criticize you and he will most importantly never leave you. Your addiction will never be the reason why he wouldn't save you. We are all worth saving and you deserve the life he has installed for you even after your addiction.

Jesus knew me and he knows you too and no matter how you see yourself he sees what you can be rather than what you currently are.

Hi, my name is Trish and I’m a recovering addict! I’ve been sober from ALL substances for a while now and my story didn’t end because I choose love over addiction, light over darkness, faith over fear, and myself over everyone else and you can too!

Hand reaching for the sun
Addiction vs Sobriety by Trisha Rapley

Addiction vs Sobriety...

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