Not too long ago we lost one of our own. He reached a point where there was less pain in putting a gun to his head than putting a bottle to his mouth… again. And he lived just a few block away from me. So part of the responsibility is mine. I’ll own that. And certainly one of the things that struck me in the days following that numbing event was how many of the oldtimers sat hunched over their coffee in the cafe thumbing through the names who over the years had done the very same thing. I’m still challenged in the imagery of these conversations because the truth is we all have a responsibility to let the struggler know he/she is not alone in this battle. Now to be fair, the man at the top of this ‘graph had people around him. But I think there’s a serious difference between simply having people around us and having someone in our life with whom we can truly be naked and unashamed. Great post from message in a bottle on getting back what you put in.
I was running yesterday in a nearby park area and stumbled across a makeshift memorial site. A young man, who lost his life several years ago, still being kept in memory by still-fresh flowers and keepsakes. I had to stop and take it in. I also had to keep in mind that this memorial was located at the bottom of a bridge. A very high bridge. What made this young soul decide to jump at that time is unknown to me. But the pain had to be scorching enough to end it in a gruesome fashion.
Post-run shower had me in tears. Unexpected tears. Sure I was heartbroken at this lad, but I was more overtaken by the emotions of both gratitude and grief regarding the deadly nature of alcoholism. At the meeting the other night I saw people who I thought “had it” standing up and getting chips for…
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