Friday, May 28, 2010

The Affected, The Afflicted & The Untouched

Now and then in my morning meeting I am reminded that the mind of a chronic alcoholic is different from mine. Someone spoke about a co-worker who was asking some 'naive' questions about the compulsion to drink. He found the gulf between himself and the other gentleman was huge, difficult to explain it to someone so removed from alcoholic use. The recovering person felt affronted by such oblivion, feeling that everyone ought to know something about the disease.

My reaction, the polar opposite, was happiness that there are really people who have the pleasure of not knowing much about it. To live with active disease is to have it pushed in your face, a crash course in deception and consequences. When I took a self-admitted drug and alcohol addicted woman into my life I was optimistic that because we were both smart, loving and educated about the disease that we had an excellent chance at a good life together. I was sleeping with my purse under my pillow in a few short months. I learned that the disease is cunning, baffling and all powerful. It does not care about our lives, it will take and take until there is nothing left. It was the first time in my life that I could not get what I wanted.

There are people whose lives ARE unscathed by active disease. I say they are lucky for reasons known only by a power greater than ourselves. Had I not taken an alcoholic into my life, I would not have experienced the disease. As a teen, I had never seen anyone drunk until I went away to school and I quickly become one of them. By the grace of God, it was only a phase and I outgrew it.

So, we are who we are, living a segment of our lives for who knows what reason. What's good about today is compassion for others, let me not judge for I am just a child among others in a world of mystery.


  1. God, carol, you write well. "...a child among others...mystery."

    "...To live with active disease is to have it pushed in your face, a crash course in deception and consequences." Phew!

    Don't know what to say--you have your topic completely "covered"! Great post!

  2. I wish that I had not known as much about the disease as I do but it has been a life time full of it for me. And I still see its effects.