Friday, November 13, 2009

Old Addicts

It’s pretty fun working at The Coleman Institute. Besides helping people to be released from their addictions and launching their new lives through our various Accelerated Detox programs, we have a pretty rockin’ family practice, too.

Many of our ‘local addicts’ become our family practice patients. It’s pretty convenient for your doctor to know your history and understand the medical problems that accompany alcohol and drug addiction.

I have to say, I am humbled when some of the ‘old addicts’ come for a check up. These are men and women who have many years of sobriety under their belt. You can almost tell whom they are when you walk into the room, even if you’ve never met them before.

There is an air of joy, acceptance, and perspective. In stark contrast to the many, many people who have stress and anxiety issues, these patients radiate a peacefulness about them-even if they have some pretty complex medical issues. The message they send is: I could have been dead so many times in the past because of things I’ve done, every extra day is a gift.

Most of these folks spend their time in selfless giving. They are quietly accessible to others who need help. They live in deep joy but not in deep drama.

Now that I think about it, I’m certain I feel better after a visit with these folks than anything I could possibly do for them. Maybe this is how it feels to be in the presence of the Dali Lama. How lucky am I?

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