My husband and I laughed today. We laughed at the absurdity and insanity of addiction. Sometimes in recovery you must laugh. Because if you don’t, you may find yourself crying all the damn time.
In California my husband speed balled. He smoked dope and meth together to create a potent high. When he did this his behavior presented as mania. It was a mix of thrilling and terrifying. During his manic highs he would become euphoric, impulsive, and very disorganized. He acquired hundreds of succulents for our patio and began a collection of lights. By lights I mean flashlights, little red lasers, lanterns, LED lights, and headlamps. We had drawers, boxes, and a garage filled with them.
A couple years back on a Saturday morning, yoga-blissed-out, I arrived home from class to find my husband riding his bike in circles around our townhouse property, wide bug-eyes popping out of his skull, at least 5 headlamps wrapped around his forehead. Talk about a yoga buzz kill. Did I mention the San Diego sun was shining above us in the broad daylight hours? Yup it was bananas.
Fast forward to today, with 262 days of sobriety under his belt, my husband picked up his bike at a repair shop in Massachusetts where we now live. He took it in for a tune-up last weekend. (He wouldn’t have gotten it together to do this if he was still using.) This is the same bike that he rode in frantic circles in Cali. Tire tubes replaced, gears tightened, and new bar handle pads were put on.
When my husband arrived home with his like-new shiny bike (polish included in tune-up), he told me that the mechanic had commented on the lights. You see, his bike had been lovingly and manically adorned in lights. Flashlights, headlights, tail lights, attached haphardly all over the metal bars with special accessories and duct tape. And those damn LED lights like a Dr. Suess poem. Big ones, little ones, blinking ones, steady ones, blue ones, red ones, working ones, broken ones.
So the mechanic questioned, “why do you have so many bike lights? Did you get hit? Do you ride a lot at night?” My husband laughed when he recounted the exchange. He said to me, “I wanted to tell him, no I’m just a dope fiend who smoked black tar heroin and meth off of tin foil and did some crazy shit”. But he didn’t say that. Not to him at least. He said it to me instead. In the privacy and love of our home, he felt safe enough to speak those words to me, to share his painful truth with me. And cradled in our safety net, I was ready to receive his words, to receive them graciously and openly. So he shared, I received, I touched his face (oh how I love that face), and we laughed. It’s easier to laugh today, because today he is sober.
Today, by the grace of God, he has not picked up in 262 days. Today, by the grace of God, he is almost 9 months clean.
Thank you God.
Anyone still picking up out there:
In love, compassion, and light(s).
-M and J