Making Changes

“Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.”

― Narcotics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous

There comes a time in all of our lives when everyone on the outside sees a flaw in us but we are too blind to recognize the damage our behaviors are having on ourselves. It is extremely frustrating being on the outside. You want to shake these people and tell them to wake up to recognize what they are doing is harmful and make them stop. Life is a precious gift and why throw it away! Yell at them and explain to them that if they continue on the same path they are going to miss alot of memories – grandkids, baseball games, birthdays, etc… All the while mostly they will turn a deaf ear to us because addiction is something that those who aren’t addicted just can’t fully understand or comprehend. We are sad for those people but for whatever reason they are happy with the choices they’ve made and satisfied to live their lives on ‘their terms’. It pisses all of us on the outside of because in our mind it is selfish and it is a waste of such a precious gift but we are all free to make our own choices and others (including myself) need to learn to accept it.

I highlighted a quote from a book I read a few years back because it angered me so much because I think addicts truly feel this way. They accept their fate as if there is no ability to change it. Their addiction ultimately will likely become self-serving and will be lead to their cause of death at which time they’ll be able to think ‘told so’.

“I admire addicts. In a world where everybody is waiting for some blind, random disaster or some sudden disease, the addict has the comfort of knowing what will most likely wait for him down the road. He’s taken some control over his ultimate fate, and his addiction keeps the cause of his death from being a total surprise.”

― Chuck Palahniuk, Choke

It doesn’t have to be this way of course. For example, a recent study showed that people who quit smoking by age 40 extend their lives by 10 years. That is ten extra years of wonderful memories spent with family and friends – hopefully enjoying the ‘golden years’ of your life. Now, the effects may not be as extreme for older smokers but I guarantee that the effects of quitting no matter what the age are extensive in terms of your lifespan. For those of us on outside we don’t understand what the hurry to the grave is.

Photo of the Day – Uffizi Gallery

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Sorry for the somber post today but had to get some things off my chest. This is the narrow courtyard between the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, Italy. The street leads out to the River Arno and probably extends another 100 yards or so behind where I took this shot from. Unfortunately, they were doing construction to the majority of the wing on the right side so I wasn’t able to capture the full extent of the courtyard. Usually this place is jammed – you must buy tickets weeks, if not months in advance, just to get in (the David statue is the most famous of several historically important Renaissance works) – but at 6:30 in the morning, shortly after sunrise there was barely anyone around. The silence was magical. Except for a few policeman guarding the historic structure and some street vendors setting up in the courtyard at my back the place was a ghost town. Yet another advantage to loving life and squeezing each second out of the day – serenity in what is often a chaotic space. I just wish my mind would be able to go on sabbatical once in awhile.

4 thoughts on “Making Changes

  1. Addiction, or kicking it, isn’t as easy as it sounds. Some found the way through spirituality, others through God. I’ve been on the “outside” when it was someone I loved who couldn’t “kick it” and I’ve been on the “inside”, too. After many failed attempts I learned that love and prayer were all it took to become free. But it’s not easy. No, it is not easy.

    The wonderful thing about blogging is that you can say what you want to say 😉 Hope you felt better after getting it off your chest.

    And that is a handsome photo by the way.

    Cheers – Mary

    • Mary – Thank you very much for your kind words. It’s not easy being on the ‘outside’ and I’ve been fortunate through my lifetime to have never been on the ‘inside’ of addiction. I am happy to hear you were able to overcome the inside and become free and I know it isn’t easy. From the outside it is hard to understand why sometimes but I do know that it isn’t easy otherwise everyone would just stop whatever it is they were addicted too. Thank you again and yes I certainly felt better.

  2. Smoking is the devils work *smile – my mum stopped smoking after 65 years … she was 89 when she quite. All women in our family comes to a high age .. so mum will be around until she is over 100 now. Wonderful. Stunning photo again – I start to sound like an old .. record.

    • That it is and oh so happy for your mum. Sorry for the delayed response – I’ve been autoposting the past few days since I knew I’d be preoccupied at the hospital. That is amazing that the women in your family live so long. I couldn’t imagine that but I do hope I am so fortunate! Thanks for the words and for providing me with some ammo to tell my old man that it is never too late to make some changes.

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