Thirty Years a Junkie

Young Andrew Joyce

Young Andrew Joyce

Writing deadlines are looming, and a death in my extended family put Tornado Boy in my care for the weekend. I didn’t have time to pull together a halfway coherent post for today. Yet, somehow the serendipitous universe understood. Andrew Joyce, author of The Swamp, which I posted about 10 days ago, asked me to share this story from his youth. It’s gritty – a story of a man’s life spiraling out of control, and the bravery and determination necessary to fight his way back.

***

Compared to some, I’ve lived an exciting life. At least parts of it were. However, compared to others, my life has been humdrum. The only thing I’m satisfied about is that all the drama took place when I was young and able to handle it. That would not be the reality today for I have grown old.

It’s confession time. I’m not looking for absolution. My only intent is to show some of you out there that there is hope. Nothing is forever. Perhaps my story might help you get to the next stage of your life. Maybe not, but I had help getting there, and I’ll tell you about it in a minute. First, a little background. And please, feel free to judge me. You cannot condemn me any more than I have already condemned myself.

When I was kid, I always had a wanderlust. I would see a freight train sitting on a siding, waiting to go on its way, and I would try to imagine its ultimate destination. Those open boxcars called to me. If I could only get into one of those cars, then I would be transported into a new life. Finally, I would see where the rails ended—that magical place. Then, and only then, would I know the secrets of the road. The secrets of the universe…

Source: Thirty Years a Junkie

75 thoughts on “Thirty Years a Junkie

  1. So sorry to hear about your loss, may her soul rest in peace. Sending out lots of love.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m sorry to hear of your loss, Diana. You must have enjoyed having your grandson with you, though. Andrew’s story is amazing. It’s a wonder he survived to write about it. —- Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

  3. inesephoto says:

    Sorry for your loss, Diana. She must be a good woman. My daughter’s grandmother never bothered to say hello.
    Andrew had a fair share of tests and trials, and I respect the sufferings he has come through. I have read the swamp story, and I thought it was fiction.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. reocochran says:

    Oops, meant to say this was a harrowing real life story by Andrew. Always good to know someone makes it to the “other side” and back!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. reocochran says:

    I am saddened that someone in your family died, Diana. Your Tornado boy drinking cocoa tipped me off, but I was washing clothes and packing up. One weekend but coming back to work, so need to be ready for Sunday night resting up.
    You will get right back to work, once normal routine resumes. 🙂 Peace be with you. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Condolences on the loss of your family member, Diana. Wishing the best for you and your family. Grandchildren are precious!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh my. I’m so sad for everyone involved. Even after the fact (and because I believe time is fungible, not in a straight line), I wish you best luck in handling these horrid occurrences.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Jacqui. I didn’t mean to usurp Andrew’s post with the news of the death in my extended family. We are all shifting back into our routines. I also believe time is fungible, yet, Andrews story is certainly a journey! Thanks so much for the visit and comment. 🙂

      Like

  8. Annika Perry says:

    Diana, I am very sorry for your loss and you’re in my thoughts.❤️ I hope having your grandson to care for helped a bit, although 20 hours lego can be 15 too many! I read Andrew Joyce’s piece, absolutely incredible life experiences. Read like the best of fiction.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. C.E.Robinson says:

    Such sad news, Diana. Sorry for your loss. Your comforting role so important for old & young family members. I’ve read & commented on Andrew’s post. Believe he had a “flock” of angels protecting him along the way. Also his rearranged brain made him into a successful writer. Some drug related stories end well. Good thoughts for you! 🎶 Christine

    Liked by 2 people

  10. So sorry for your loss, Diana. I always think it’s so interesting when people who have left our immediate family for whatever reason (divorce, widow/er) remain in it despite the lack of actual blood relation. Hope you enjoyed your time with Tornado Boy 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Bernadette says:

    What a comfort children are at a time of grief. So glad you have your grandson with you to help lift your spirits.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Steven Baird says:

    So sorry for your loss, Diana. And thank you for sharing this remarkable story.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. And thank you for sharing Andrew’s story.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Hi, Diana, I’m thinking of you and your family today, and sending condolences for your loss.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your mother-in-law Diana. I think taking some time to spend with Tornado Boy is a good decision. You know we’ll still be here when you get back AND that we are also here for you for support at any time. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  16. So sorry for your loss, D.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I’m so sorry to read about your loss. Even when it is “expected” it is always a shock when it actually happens – and a loss to be grieved. My condolences, especially to the grandchildren – sometimes I think death hits them hardest, since it is often their first experience with it.

    Do what you need to do to take care of yourself and your loved ones — and Tornado Boy, of course.
    xx,
    mgh
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder
    “It takes a village to transform a world!”

    PS. Had already read Andrew’s post – INCREDIBLE – and inspiring.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. So sorry for your loss dear xx

    Liked by 3 people

  19. tpolen says:

    Very sorry for your loss, Diana.

    Liked by 3 people

  20. So sorry for your loss, Diana. You’re in my thoughts and prayers ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  21. His story…left me without words.

    Liked by 2 people

  22. Phil Ryan says:

    Oh best wishes D. X

    Liked by 1 person

  23. janmalique says:

    So sorry to hear about your loss, you are in my thoughts.

    Liked by 3 people

  24. So sorry for your loss. Our thoughts are with you.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. Erik says:

    I’m somehow feeling a connection this morning between death, addiction, recovery, having less time … and Tornado Boy. Can I make sense of it? Not so sure.

    That little boy has every BIG choice still ahead of him — a whole life of possibilities yet to unfold. What an important role you are playing in his life — another person to help him understand, by voice and by example, what a good choice looks like, how to be honest when you’re faced with (or make) a bad choice, and how to recover in the short run, while the boat is still aright.

    I’m also aware in this moment of the importance of the little choices we all make in between the big ones, and how much they matter. You’re choosing well today, my friend, giving precedence to family and to Tornado Boy at a time of need, over insisting that a writing schedule be kept.

    It seems the death may be in your in-law-extended family, but my heart goes out to those who are saying goodbye right now. And if it’s been your own loss as well, I’m so sorry.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Perceptive, Erik. Yes, my ex-mother in law passed peacefully away. She was a wonderful woman and the matriarch of her family. Tornado Boy doesn’t quite understand it, but we’re chatting while we play with Legos. 🙂 Thanks for your thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Joanne Sisco says:

    My condolences to you and your family. My thoughts are with you xx

    Liked by 2 people

  27. Very sorry for your loss, Diana.

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Marjorie says:

    I, too, am sorry to hear of your loss. My prayers are with you and your family.

    Liked by 2 people

  29. I am sorry for your loss. I am thinking about you.

    Liked by 2 people

    • My ex-mother in law passed away. She was a special woman, and her transition was peaceful. My daughter flew to the funeral to be with her dad’s family, so Tornado Boy stayed here and wore me out. 🙂 Thanks for the thoughts. ❤

      Like

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