Over the past couple days I have been torn.
I was the victim of someone's active addiction. I saw the other side. I felt what it's like to be hurt by an addict.
So then there's the question: does she deserve to be faced with a felony charge for the theft, or does she deserve some compassion from a fellow addict?
No, I never did the things that she did. BUT, I did hit rock bottom. I will never forget what the bottom feels like. It's a place that sometimes I visit when I get a craving or contemplate using again. It's a place that I go sometimes to reflect, learn, and remember how dark and sad that place is.
So, here lies the dilemma. For some reason, I can't press charges, but I couldn't really understand why.
I believe this experience became a very personal learning experience for me and my recovery.
She is at rock bottom. She is sick and needs help. I know what that's like. This is my opportunity to show compassion and understanding towards what addiction really is. It really is a scary scary disease that can be hard to overcome. BUT, it can be overcome. Miracles can happen.
So, not only am I showing compassion towards her illness and problem; that also allows me to have more compassion towards myself and my mistakes. I didn't make mistakes like she did. But, I did hurt people and make mistakes of my down during my active addiction. Addictions cause people to do crazy crazy things.
Through this experience, I am able to grow in my own recovery. I am able to have more compassion and love towards myself. I'm not a terrible person with an addiction. I am someone who has a really scary and bad disease, and I work every day to make sure I stay on top of it and manage it. I believe in the process of recovery, and I believe that if someone at rock bottom truly wants to change, it is absolutely possible. I am proof of that.
I am grateful for experiences like this. Even though it has been really hard, it has taught me more about myself and my own recovery. I was able to overcome a difficult situation without using drugs. That's HUGE. Probably the first time in about 8 years that I was faced with chaos and didn't turn to drugs for comfort. I am getting better and better every day!