What Works

Mark - Yelm, Washington
Entered on January 23, 2009
Age Group: 30 - 50
Themes: addiction, change

On May 11, 2008 I smashed head first into the harsh realization that my life had to change, or I was going to die. After 16 years of severe drug and alcohol abuse, along with countless attempts to control or stop my using, I surrendered and accepted my need for outside help. Armed with the knowledge that “my way” of trying to change always ended in failure, I made the decision to try something new. Badly beaten, bruised and battered from the years of self-inflicted physical, mental and emotional neglect as a result of using, I sought the help I so desperately needed through the fellowship of Narcotics Anonymous (NA).

Stepping through the doors of NA for the first time, into the open arms of recovery, was exactly what I needed. From my very first meeting, I knew the fellowship and 12 step program NA has to offer was going save my life. During my first hour and a half meeting, listening to others share their experience, strength, and hope, I found myself feeling very much at home. The sense of being a misunderstood outcast from society slipped away. It was replaced by comfort along with a sense of belonging. I was surrounded by people who had shared in my pain and misery as an individual suffering from the disease of addiction. I quickly identified those who appeared to have a certain level of serenity, as well as a quality of life I was attracted to. Through the reciprocated connection shared with other members of the fellowship, I came to believe that the therapeutic value of one addict helping another is without parallel.

Before coming to the fellowship of NA, I was powerless over my addiction, that my life had become unmanageable. I was ready to have God punch my ticket. Today, with eight months seven days clean, I have found a new way to live. I gather strength and hope from the experience of other addicts who have something I want: clean time, serenity, and a quality of life that only comes from working the steps and practicing the principles in all of their affairs. For this addict, I believe that each moment I remain clean and sober is a miracle, and that each miracle is a direct result of the power of Narcotics Anonymous.