I was a spectator on the sidelines of life, never a participant marching in the joyous parade of the living. I lived in fear of losing the addict to the disease of addiction. Watching the addict self-destruct made me resentful, and I lost the joy life had to offer. I perceived my life as one continuous nightmare. Then, with the help of my Higher Power, I found Nar-Anon. After my first meeting, I felt better. I did not understand many things that were said, but I could see that there were others in my shoes. They had experienced addiction, understood my problem, and yet they seemed happy.

I kept attending meetings, and slowly I began to understand the program. I could see the part I played in the cycle of addiction and the parts that are out of my control. I am not responsible for the disease of addiction, whether it is my spouse, friend or child who is suffering. I now know that “I didn’t cause it, I can’t control it, and I can’t cure it.” I also know that I do not have to enable the addict or protect my addicted loved ones from the consequences of their using. I can heal and recover regardless of what the addict chooses to do. I can wish my addicted loved ones health, happiness, peace, and serenity, but they must choose how they will participate in the parade of life.

Today is a new day because I found Nar-Anon. In this program, I found the way to turn the focus from the addict to myself. I have chosen to step off the curb and participate in making my life a joyous one.

Thought for Today: I will choose to have love, laughter, serenity, peace, and joy in my life.

“The most important lesson that man can learn from his life is not that there is pain in this world, but that it depends upon him to turn it into good account, that it is possible for him to transmute it into joy.” ~ Rabindranath Tagore