Excuse me for interrupting the little party here, but I happen to know something about addiction. And I don’t wear a tweed jacket, mismatched socks, smoke a pipe, and hold my chin a lot.
I don’t have a degree in existential masturbation and Mongolian behavioral habits.
I am a drunk, an addict and a former lost soul, and I don’t need some intellectual spanking my inner child. What does he know?
I know what its like to crave the hair of the dog, to shake myself awake and nod myself to sleep. To lose not only conversations but whole days and weeks.
I remember sitting in a rehab unit at the VA two years ago begging for release. They just stared over the top of their glasses. I wasn’t gonna stroke out on their dime.
The VA couldn’t help me, they held me. They just replaced my drugs with theirs. Lobotomies in pill form.
My primary care doc didn’t help me, she almost killed me. Ambien, Soma, Lunesta, Gabapentin and the one that damn near got me, Xanax.
Throw in almost every antidepressant on the market and I was a local pharmacy favorite.
My doctor knew my history. All of it. Still…
Know what saved me? Exercise. Once they got the majority of the poison out of me, the rest was on me.
A week out of rehab, I was walking my dog down by the railroad tracks and stumbled upon a gritty iron factory. A full blown gym like out of an Arnold movie. 24 hour access.
That’s where you would find me, taking my iron pills. I sweat it out of me. All the anger, the resentment and the animus. Oh, the release.
AA meetings to me are like the Catholic Mass in Latin. Rinse and repeat. It’s just some place to go until the bars close. That’s my opinion and I’ve been to enough of them.
You can’t stop a major addiction and stand still. Something needs to take up that void and it ain’t Jesus. We’re all junkies to something. We all need fixin’. Exercise is that fix.
I won’t simplify it, if you don’t complicate it. We are made to move, to struggle and strain. We are put together to do things with our bodies. When we don’t, stuff starts happening. Bad stuff.
I got my mind right as I watched my body change, the spring return to my step and my attitude get more positive. Exercise did that for me. Saved my soul.
As Gregg Allman sang, “We still have two strong legs and even wings to fly.