Sunday, August 28, 2011
I'm Going To Jail
One of the oddities of the story of my active addiction was, though I went through nearly $45K worth of Cocaine in a 15 month period of time at the end of my active drug use, buying it every other day in quantities of a quarter ounce or so each time...I never got caught or went to Jail though there were some very close calls, a lot of suspicion and too many twitchy dope dealers with firearms for my comfort. But I needed my Coke so I did what I had to do...But, seriously, I have never been arrested or spent a night in jail...All the times I drove drunk and there were so many I couldn't begin to count, I never got caught.
I was pulled over at a vehicle inspection on St Route 315 on my 17th Birthday, with an open container of beer, high on Quaalude...by some miracle, I passed the sobriety test, the cop made me dump out the beer and off we went to get hammered the rest of the day! There were 5 of us in the car, all of us underage, all carrying dope and the cop let us go. Oh yea, it was 1:30pm on a school day afternoon so we were cutting school as well! Things were WAY different in 1979 then they are now, today we all would have gone to jail for possession for sure.
The reason I bring up the jail thing is this: because of what I am going to be doing tomorrow night, I sort of wish I had gone to jail at some point in my life. Now you're convinced I've lost my mind, right?!
Well, the reason I almost wish I'd had the experience of going to jail was I'm going into the Branch County Jail tomorrow night to give my testimony at a Forgotten Man Ministries gathering. Branch County Jail Chaplain D. Brown, who happens to go to my church asked me a couple months ago if I would be interested and I said sure. It will be the first time I have told my story for a gathering of spiritual or church oriented people. I have spoken in times past at recovery oriented gatherings but never about my decision to follow the Lord. I very humbled and grateful to have the opportunity to do it...
This is the kind of thing I am referring to when I have said in the past here on the blog that you have to "give it away" to "keep it". In other words we recovering alcoholic/addicts keep our life in recovery by helping others. I am not a natural public speaker...I've had a fair amount of chances during my career to give presentation's, etc. but it is not something I like to do. I do it because it helps me to stay sober.
But I am happy to have the opportunity and I hope and pray that I am able to share my story in a way that glorifies God and what he has done for me plus it may give the inmates a little bit of Hope. I know from experience that even a little sliver of Hope can make all the difference in the world. Perhaps they will begin to see that: You can recover from terminal addiction...you don't need to kill yourself. Victims of violence, even of rape can heal and you can go from breaking the law every single day of your life, buying and selling Narcotics to living a productive life as an active, law abiding member of society. I did that...and if I can well anyone can.
So...if anyone out in blog-land happens to be a person of prayer, meditation...whatever, I sure would appreciate just a little, teeney-weenie prayer being directed my way tomorrow at 6p so whatever I say and do during that talk may indeed have a postive affect on someone who hears it.
I am not really nervous at the moment when I think about it...I suppose I will feel the nerves a bit more tomorrow but the cool thing about these kind of talks is that it is your own story! So I obviously already KNOW the material!! I've gotten pretty comfortable sharing tough details of my life and I really don't intend to leave anything out. I trust that I am doing the right thing and it is going to work itself out...I'm looking forward to it really.
I've discovered that experiences like this are really beneficial, I learn as much as the audience does...sometimes even more. I used to avoid taking risks in life...I no longer try to do that if I can avoid it. It's so good to get out of your own shell and share your story for the benefit of someone else. It's kind of a rush in a way. But that is what I will be doing dtomorrow night...so with that I'll close this little blog post for the evening. Hope everyone has a pleasant Sunday evening...