People, places, things. This all needs to change if an addict wishes to remain sober. Lose the friends you partied with, avoid the places you partied and especially things like that spoon you once cooked heroin on, pictures of yourself young, carefree and partying, souvenir shot glasses from a wild week in Vegas...
Getting sober is extremely lonely. There is nothing harder than avoiding everything you once knew and once made you feel more alive than anything else. Now, its AA/NA meeting filled with everyone talking about their lowest moments and what it took to finally get them to rehab. Making new friends, who can't hang and relapse only to go back out and OD. Your oldest, closest friends calling you to hang out, promising they won't use in front of you and you have to tell them you can no longer be their friend. Then they resent you because you're clean and they're still stuck in that horrid vortex of active addiction.
But that is all week one, lol. It gets better after that. You get into a routine. You figure out how to live life without using. That you can make it through a weekend clean and sober. You find a home group - an AA/NA meeting that you decide to attend and become apart of. You get a sponsor, someone you can lean on in times of need. You find the right people to hang out with, those with years of sobriety and knowledge that can help you stay clean. You learn you can have fun doing mundane everything days like playing pool or bowling without being high.
You attend out-patient counseling. Discuss your life, when you started using, why, how long. Figure out your triggers, develop a plan to avoid triggers and what to do in case you feel like relapsing.
Now, its a few years later, you are strong in your recovery and now you speak at meetings. And you take on new sponsors of your own and become their lifeline. And you heartbreaks as you watch them struggle just like you struggled in the beginning. And you tell them it gets better, and they want to believe it, but the lure of relapse seems so much easier...
10 years sober