I work with hospice — four years in the north Georgia Mountains as a recruiter and trainer of volunteers and bereavement coordinator, and going on six years as a volunteer in Cody, WY. Give me end-of-life any day over addiction any day.
WHAT? You heard it right. For me, dealing with end-of-life is far more forgiving than living with a loved one’s active addiction. Resolution at the end of life is the natural closing of the life cycle. Nothing about addiction is natural. Addiction is total corruption of body, mind, and spirit, wholly violating a user’s integrity of being. There is no natural resolution for it, which is like living with cancer — and unlike it.
Managing cancer is the work of chemotherapy and radiation, and other treatments. With addiction we cannot know when remission (recovery) may end and the cancer (using) become active again. Managing addiction is the work of recovery within a disease as a matter of choice — one of those wonderful paradoxes that I refer to as Planet Paradox in IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU — EXCEPT WHEN IT IS.
This parent lives with the cancer of my offspring’s addiction every day. A 12-Step program helps me do so, which I also recommend in my book. Will my offspring choose wisely today or not? Will there be consequences or not? Will I receive a call from the ER, or worse?
May this be a good day in your world.
May it be a good day in mine.
I’ll be heading into the hospice inpatient care unit.