Life is very short and anxious for those who forget the past, neglect the present and fear the future
This is a blog for posterity, about my personal journey through council estates and reprobates, addiction and living with a physical disability, followed as ever by the haunting spectre of anxiety and fear.
Im well aware i’m joining the majority of 30 somethings blogging about their dull lives for nobody to read, but I guess i’m doing this partly as I value the stoic strategy of journalling and find it somewhat cathartic, but also in the hope that it can perhaps be a flicker of light to someone going through their own period of darkness. We can and do recover.
I write this having just completed my third 10k road race in Grimsby. The only time I remember doing cross country at school, we used to dick off to smoke in ‘the pheaso’, so running has never been a friend, unless you count running from my responsibilities, kinda made acquaintance with that for a while.
This race was also a personal milestone for me, in that it was the first time ive ran in public in a tshirt since being an adult. I have suffered from depression for many years relating to body issues from my congenitive limb defect, and become very obsessive about covering up my imperfections. This year has been a bit of a transformative one in many ways as i also adjust to being a dad and balancing a difficult workload, while working on myself. Really appreciate everyones support and motivation.
As a person in long term recovery part of my personal programme focuses on goal setting, so in order to push myself out of my comfort zone this year I have signed up to run the London marathon in 2020, and have been humbled to be given the opportunity to be raising some money for a charity that is close to my heart.
Practising acceptance among other stoic and CBT based strategies have been central to my recovery journey and addressing my own thought patterns and behaviours. Ultimately we have a choice to face our fears and try to be the best version of ourselves given the circumstances within our control.
#uksmartrecovery Has been also been present throughout my journey into recovery, from facilitating meetings as a volunteer with a local service provider to delivering the programme as an employed staff member in the NHS, to now being employed full time as UK SMART Recovery National coordinator for England.
I was probably considered a lost cause, disenfranchised from society and unable to talk about my issues, perpetuated by the shame and stigma around addiction, mental health, and the taboo of disability, part of my healing process after a successful spell in detox has been embracing acceptance and facing life on lifes terms, as the cliche goes.
Having worked in the sector for a number of years i am as ever encouraged by my amazing peers that are supporting recovery communities across the uk in increasingly difficult conditions, amidst record numbers of drug related deaths and government austerity measures.
I would encourage anyone looking to regain some control over their addictive behaviours to use mutual aid as part of their recovery capital. There are many pathways to recovery, but acceptance is required in all. We can and do recover.
The obstacle is the path – Old zen proverb
Thank you for reading. All is love. 🙂