When struggling with addiction, we don’t always know what it will be that finally forces us to stop, get help and get sober. We’re so deeply embroiled in our addictive patterns and the painful cycles we’re in that we don’t feel we have the clarity, the conviction or the willpower to stop our addictions ourselves. We don’t feel strong enough. We feel powerless against the formidable and terrifying force of our addictions. We see ourselves as being doomed to a life of dependence, self-destruction and pain. We feel weak. We are filled with shame, sadness, regret and remorse. We hate ourselves. In this place, it can feel virtually impossible to summon the courage, resilience and strength we need in order to recover.
Sometimes the turning point for us, the thing that makes us finally make the decision to get clean, is something that feels as though it’s external to us, as opposed to our own internal resources. Many of us go through something catastrophic that serves as a painful wake-up call. It might be seeing how much we’ve hurt our loved ones and our conscience finally catching up with us. We can no longer suppress all of the disappointment we feel in ourselves and in our lives. Sometimes it is a near-death experience or other trauma that makes us finally realize what’s important in life. It might be our long list of regrets that finally makes us see the importance of living a life we can be proud of. Whatever it is that pushes us to sobriety, it is the impending choice we make that matters most – will we choose to love ourselves or will we continue to self-destruct?
Our addictions have a way of making us grow complacent within our patterns. We stop caring about our health and our safety. We prioritize our addictions over everything in our lives, including our well-being. We don’t nurture or protect ourselves. We’re in a place of deep self-hatred, insecurity and self-rejection, where we’re unable to accept ourselves for who we are. An important step in the recovery process is coming to terms with where we are in our journey. We can tell ourselves that everything we’re going through, including the painful and shameful things, is all part of our evolution. We empower ourselves to heal when we have acceptance, when we surrender to the intense wake-up call that jolts us into action. What ultimately is most important is how we respond to that wake-up call – do we heed the call and do what’s right of ourselves, or do we continue to ignore the many signs that we’re headed for disaster?
If you’re struggling with addiction, you’re not alone. Reach out for support. The community of Riverside Recovery has personal experience with addiction and recovery. We’re here to help you reclaim the life you love. Call (800) 871-5440 today.