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Voices for Recovery

Roxanne Fredd (10/31/2011)

Based on my eleven years clean and sober, I share my personal interpretation of a deadly illness known as addiction. My degree on the disease of addiction came from knowledge acquired through pain and growth through life. While on my quest to enlighten how I rid myself of all drugs and alcohol, I visited correctional and treatment [facilities] and talked to groups of men and women of all races and ages. The recurring themes of our conversations were, “Drugs and lifestyle, had been their downfall.”  I must say that it felt good being able to go into a prison then walk back out the same day. Not having to live with those slamming steel doors day after day for years of my life was a blessing. Every time I went inside a prison, I thanked God that this was not my story.

Then the sting of prison slapped me personally, with my husband and son going into prison. Drugs and Lifestyle had boldly taken over my home with and without my permission.  I make that statement because I saw the power of the lifestyle consuming the two men in my life.  I vividly recall the big guns, then even bigger guns, that were in what was supposed to be a secret place inside our home.
Question: What is a ‘Lifestyle”?  Well, this is my personal interpretation based on what I have witnessed in my fifty-six years of life.  Lifestyle, “The way a person will act or portray him or herself to be in a day-to-day existence.”  Thus, there are many types of lifestyles. I feel safe to say that my eleven years clean and sober is a lifestyle for me. Except the lifestyle inside this book, talks of a force powered by destructive, self-centered ways of life. It has no respect for the well-being, property, or safety of others. A kill or be killed mentality between people on the street, also known as “the block.”  This type of lifestyle took out the men inside the pages of this book.  That insatiable hunger for fast money, power, and the look of a baller was what they went after, not considering the price that they could ultimately pay for it. 

My husband, and I felt compelled to write this book of fiction, “If the Drugs Don’t Get You the Lifestyle Will”!  We spent several hours together on weekend visits at the federal prisons, talking about some of the dumb things that he went through and saw others do while out there on the streets, submerged in the lifestyle.  Thus, we collaborated to create a heartfelt chilling story of sex, drugs and a lifestyle that has manifested itself into a book of recovery.  For all that would like to know, my husband was and still is in recovery. Five years clean did not stop the prison doors from opening up to him and locking him away.  Drugs are what he sold, and the lifestyle was what gave him the mindset to think it was perfectly fine to do so. Unfortunately, it was also the lifestyle that told him it was okay to carry the big .45 caliber on his person, which gave him a feeling of imaginary power, as if it were legal.

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