The Positives After Active Addiction and During Recovery
This is from contributing writer B.H. She regularly shares her stories about her son’s addiction including the following post on what she learned from her son’s addiction and the positives that came from it.
When my son was going through active addiction and early recovery, my stress level was high. My anxiety was even higher. Actually, the whole family on both sides were suffering from my son’s addiction. It affected every single aspect of my life in such a negative way.
I remember praying at night and asking for healing. I remember thinking that I would never worry about anything else if my son could just be okay. Little did I know that it would take a lot of time to heal and to regain trust. Fortunately, I was blessed to have my son get help and work tirelessly at recovery. So far, so good.
With all that I went through as a person, and with all that our family went through, I look back and think about those horrifying days.
Now that he is doing very well staying clean and sober, I have found a few positives (thanks to my counselor) that have come from my experience as a mother of an addicted child.
I Have Been Thankful…for Everything
Now that my son is in active recovery, I have been so very grateful for everything. The little hiccups in life, such as work stress, a scary medical diagnosis, surgery, and financial stress, are just that – little hiccups. Rather than focus on the negatives that life can bring, I now focus on the positives, such as having my son home, the love he has for his brother, family, my home, health, and everything in between.
I have watched the teeny-tiny silver lining of a hard time in life open up into new opportunities, rekindled relationships, and a positive outlook. I am thankful that I can now take a stressful situation and turn it into a learning experience, let the bad go, and move on with life.
I Love More than Ever
It used to be that when arguments occurred with family, including my husband, I would not let them go. I would think about how upset and frustrated I was…for days.
Now, I let things go. I think about how it could be, and now communicate much better in a calmer tone. I cling to my relationships between my family and me, as well as my close inner circle of friends. These people were there for me when I would want to sobbingly talk at midnight, when I needed to get out of the house and clear my head, and when I needed people to just listen to me vent.
They never gave up on my emotional outbursts during the most stressful time of my son’s addiction. And I will never give up on them.
I Take Care of My Mind
I have learned through the tragic and heart-wrenching months (and months!) of my son suffering with addiction how powerful the mind can be. It can trick you into thinking the worst of all scenarios.
When a person is going through trauma of some sort, the anxiety and negative overload in the mind can explode into every aspect of daily life. This certainly happened with me; my son’s addiction and my codependence negatively impacted my ability to focus at work and at home. Since I have been consistently attending counseling and drug addiction meetings, I have learned about the mind and what it can do for my well-being.
Although my son is doing very well with his sobriety, I still read motivational and inspirational passages each day, I journal, and I care more for myself. I also do not hesitate to ask for help when I need it by “listening” to my inner-voice. Never underestimate the power of self-care, even when life is on an upswing!
Having a child or loved one battle active addiction is crushing to the heart. Once he entered rehab, I was hopeful but still very pained by everything he did to the family along the way.
It really amazes me how far I have come in terms of my emotional health after watching my son almost completely ruin his life, and not being able to do anything about it. But, that is in the past. I now focus on the future, and, most importantly the present!