Good Ideas Start with Coffee

Egg White Omelettes and Juice

SW beat me to breakfast last Saturday, a miracle. We met at our local pancake and coffee house as is our routine.

My friend and mentor and I touch base frequently. SW and I do our best to meet monthly and check-in face-to-face in addition to periodic texts and calls.

In …And the Earth Moved and Two Liars, I detailed our different but shared struggles.

Our meetings are friendship, accountability, mutual support, and therapy all wrapped in omelettes and juice. No mas coffee, por favor.

Lifesavers are also what they are. Not the coffee, the connectedness, companionship.

Counting Days

“183 days sober,” he said. SW folded his large, strong hands and looked skyward, “Thank you, Lord.”

A humble thankfulness returned to meet my gaze, his expression painted by the blessing of the respite from the torment that was life 184 days in his rearview.

A recovering addict always knows what time it is. Time is a cruel master for some, and for others, it measures the distance between death and life as they’ve crossed their personal chasm on the way to freedom.Counting the Days

SW looked much stronger and a bit more fit. He was both. Unshaven but slimmer around the face, SW confided that his progress to date was rooted in paying attention to the basics: Faith, nutrition and exercise. As he tends to one, the power of the others increases in response and symbiosis.

We talked about his ups and downs on this road he’s been walking, step-by-step, day-by-day, and in some cases minute-to-minute. In response to my questions, he indicated some potential solutions failed and others have been able to help sustain him. What was most important was that he was to not quit looking and continue striving to search for the right combination which will heal him.

I asked about his wife and his youngest son, who was away at college. SW’s wife completed her B.A. and was just accepted into a nursing Master’s program at a Texas university. This was a milestone. She had given herself direction to channel her considerable energies as well as the freedom to move forward…to return to the living of life, albeit a much different normal.

“He’s doing ok and scheduled to graduate in the spring with a degree in Journalism,” SW said about his youngest.

“He may travel internationally or go into the service after graduation, not yet certain. He needs some space to live and breath…to get away and get some perspective. There’s still a lot of anger.”

SW’s eyes watered and his breath shortened as he referenced his oldest son who lost the fight of his own life nearly three years ago to the demons we all share.

The Road Ahead“I can tell you that I wished I would have upped the stakes earlier. Nothing would have stopped me finding something or some way to have reached him,” he said.

“Don’t do that with Matt. Never stop looking or trying. There is an answer,” SW told me as I replayed my world to him, of my failings as a husband and father – especially to my son who has inherited the same living curses.

“Ease up on yourself. Don’t beat yourself up over it.” SW encouraged me. “Never lose hope. The answers are in front of our faces. We have to get back to the basics.”

Do You Know What Else You’re Gonna Have, Sweetie?

You, bet. I’ll have some of what he’s having.

That’s all for tonight. Tomorrow’s another light. From one sojourner to another, all the best.


Credits: Creative Commons images courtesy of Pixabay.