Last night my neighborhood was filled with the sound of fireworks. It’s been going on for weeks. Today is the 4th of July. People are celebrating Independence Day. There seems to be more criticism of our country today than in the past and the criticism is coming from both sides of the aisle politically. I have my list of things I’m not happy with but I still can’t think of another country where I’d rather reside.
The independence and freedom I want to talk about today though is of a much more personal nature. My battle with addiction began about 14 years ago. I was looking for a way to deal with the trauma and pain that was present in my life. I was looking for a quick, easy answer. Today I have learned that the quick and easy answer is rarely the right answer. I found a temporary answer but that’s really when my personal war started. My war was a battle with addiction in the form of pornography and unhealthy sexual behaviors.
War is always tragic and there are always casualties. In my war I lost things like jobs and possessions. At one time everything I owned fit in the back of my minivan. I lost 2 years of my life to the prison system. The thing I miss the most is the relationships that were lost. Friends and family members that no longer feel safe being around me. Some of those relationships have been restored but some may never be this side of heaven. In order to escape the pain and trauma I had suffered I inflicted pain and trauma on the people around me.
After my encounter with the legal system and with the intervention of friends who were willing to step up and fight with me and for me, I realized that retreat and escape were no longer the answer. If I wanted to see an end to the trail of death and destruction I was leaving in my wake I had to take the offensive. I began to gather a community that would stand with me and fight. I began to gather tools, weapons that I would need in my battle. I listened as the community around me explained how these tools work and even when I couldn’t see how the tools would benefit me I listened because I realized that my best thinking had led me into my addiction.
My battle began a little over 12 years ago. I’d like to say I experienced immediate victory but that would be a lie. Victories were won and battles were lost but the war pressed on. Battles still take place. Just this week I woke up from a dream that was so real I could have sworn that I had acted out. Rather than giving in to escape and feelings, I got up, picked up my toolbox and found a weapon that has proven trustworthy in the past and I moved forward in victory.
Today marks 6 years, 4 months and 2 days since I last lost a battle to pornography. Because I am surrounded by community and I have weapons that I have found to be powerful and effective in battle, I stand confident that I will finish today strong and I’ll move forward in strength tomorrow.
If you’re ready to start your battle or you are already engaged but are looking for a larger community and tools that have been proven by many to be effective, call or email me. We are ready to help you find your victory.