I live in Delray Beach, FL (that’s NYC above in the 70’s) and for that I am blessed. To say I live anywhere is a far cry from this period of time a year ago. Back then, I was locked in a stare down of insane intensity, conjuring Nietzsche’s abyss quote. That was one of the first times another quote that was locked in my brain clicked into perfect place, a q-tip hitting that one special spot in my ear, that would, if I was a dog, make my leg move. Oh, the words are Einstein’s- Any fool can know, the point is to understand.
Back then I knew everything, and in a matter of a week, I would attempt to kill myself in the only way I had the guts to put into action, drugs. How the rest of the story unfolds from June 7th, 2014 until today, is a testament to everything being in its right place. What I mean by that, I walked into a free rehab completely broken, a full concession to myself that heroin and I were done. I did the right thing, I began to finally understand, to truly learn. The Guy upstairs brought me to that point, and instead of cursing him for his grace, I thanked him for it.
The very last night of my stay in treatment, I met my sponsor, and got introduced to what it means to be recovered. Yes, not in recovery, but recovered. There is a group of incredible selfless men and women in Delray, people that I can call at any hour of the day or night, that are there for me no matter what, people that taught me principles I embrace, things like integrity, humility, responsibility, honesty, and selflessness.
There is another side to Delray though, and this will piss them off because the truth hurts. Halfway houses are everywhere here as well. While a few are run to foster recovery, most are nothing but money printing machines, owned by greedy ass holes. I know systems, and how to work them, but I had no idea much of the ‘recovery’ explosion down here was generated by things like IOP (intensive outpatient) and PHP (partial hospitalization program), i.e. a lot of insurance billing goes on.
Again, let me be clear, this is not a blanket condemnation of halfway houses that require/offer IOP and have PHP to treat those who fall off the horse, or relapse,
which in some of these places, is probably subliminally encouraged so that they start the billing cycle all over again. Most junkies don’t have insurance, but many that come down here do- under-25, covered by their parent’s insurance. Parents love the sound of 3 urinalysis a week, they have hard evidence that little Vinny or Tony is doing ‘well.’ At $1000 per test, the owners love the reimbursements, so much that rent is sometimes free, or $50 a week at these places for someone going to 3 IOP sessions weekly.
Hence why the feds are coming in the form of the FBI and IRS to raid these fraudulent ‘treatment’ centers. What should be a positive, growth-oriented, life-changing process, is nothing more than scamming insurance companies, much like the call center jobs many addicts get. Overbill diabetes supplies anyone? Sell computer ‘fixes’ for a company whose shell company sold the consumer the very program that broke the PC in the first place? Yeah. Me too. But I had a problem with that.
Greed is never good.
The guy with the deathwish a year ago- there was a void in that boy. One that if I did not work steps and change my perceptions, eliminate (or at least begin to work on) character defects born of insecurities and shame, would be somewhere different in life today, no matter if I still called Delray home. The adage of wherever I go, I take me along is very true. Changes in scenery are nice, but a change inside is priceless. Men in recovery taught me how to change. I am not perfect by any means, but my mistakes glare at me rather than being acceptable. I correct my course, so that I stay on a path laid out before me, that is in concert with God’s will.
My friend and I have a hashtag we use often, #actaccordingly, and that pretty much sums it up.
If you’re in Delray for recovery, act accordingly. That starts at the top, if you have parents sending their kids down here to get well, make some profit, I have no problem with that. You are running a business, with the bonus of helping some finally get it. If the sole motive is to rape insurance companies, sleep with clients, and fill up all your other insecurities with something other than spiritual matter, get the fuck out of the game. You are killing people by proxy, by ignorance.
What impressed me about my sponsor from the very first words from his mouth was his character. Some people have an aura so bright even the blind can see it. I didn’t need to see someone driving a fucking Bentley, wearing a Rolex to want to change or worse, be impressed. This man walks the talk, he most certainly acts accordingly, because he will help another addict recover, if that addict wants it.
No doubt I could talk forever about this- but know this – I love Delray, I love my life and everyone in it. If any of this pissed you off, sorry, God as I understand him doesn’t give two shits about how much you can bench, how many Tinder girls you can fuck, your expensive car, and any other material bullshit. He has been kind enough to give me neutrality, and he has given me inner peace. He has shown me my worth, and that no exterior thing adds value to it. The only thing that pays me is helping another human being out. Those riches, I pray to have the awareness daily to recognize the opportunity to give something back, and keep adding to my balance.
Peace, Love, and Understanding