“The War Within: My Story” is a book about a father’s love for his son in the midst of a horrible drug addiction, the daily challenges and battles they faced, and how they found strength and hope by God’s grace to make it through. This story contains a lot of twists and turns, ups and downs, as does any story dealing with the horrors of addiction. This story also contains hope for the hurting, help for the addicted and strength for the weary.
I wrote the book “The War Within: My Story” from my perspective; a dad’s perspective. My son, Ryan, experienced chronic migraine headaches throughout his childhood and early teenage years. To deal with his chronic pain, his lack of self-worth and the death of his grandmother, whom he loved so very dearly, Ryan made a series of bad choices, resulting in an almost 10 year battle with drug addiction. The life of a boy who had everything going for him; looks, smarts, athletic ability and a bright future, almost lost it all.
To be perfectly honest, I initially didn’t want to write a book about struggles within our family or about my son’s addiction, but felt that I needed to write it so as to provide hope to others that are struggling with addiction, either as individuals or within their own family. Addiction is no respecter of persons, backgrounds or ethnicity. It’s a deadly beast that sinks its hooks deep within a person’s life. Addiction cripples people physically, mentally, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually. To make matters worse, not only does the addicted person suffer, but also each of the person’s family members.
There were definitely many gut wrenching times for Ryan and me, as well as for my wife, Bethany, and our daughter, Rebekah, as I desperately attempted to do all that I could to help save Ryan from his struggles with drug addiction. Ryan’s addiction daily disrupted and hurt each family member as we desperately help on to anything that we could to survive. We ultimately looked to our faith in God to provide us with the hope, strength and courage that we needed during this most difficult journey. Time after time during the journey, when hope seemed to be fading, God would intervene is such a miraculous way that would spur us on to persevere.
I have found that if we as human beings can be more compassionate, merciful and loving, it would make the world of difference for those individuals and families that are dealing with addiction, anxiety and depression. Addiction usually goes hand in hand with anxiety and depression. I believe that the subjects of addiction, anxiety and depression should be discussed more, especially in churches, bringing awareness to the fact that people everywhere struggle with life and death issues. Let’s talk about these issues and more, providing love and help. After all, every human on the planet has weaknesses, and is struggling with something, be it addiction, pride, anxiety, fear, depression, anger, ect. Judgement and condemnation are certainly not the answer, nor is it our place to do so. Ultimately, I want to help as many people as I can through my book, telling my story of hope to those that need help and encouragement to overcome addiction. Thank you, Author’s Lounge for providing yet another way to get my story out.
To people that are struggling with addiction, I would tell to never, ever give up. If there’s breath in your body, there is yet hope. There are some extremely dark times when dealing with addiction. There will be doubts and fears. The way is definitely treacherous, that I know full well, but you can make it through to the other side of addiction. Trust in the Lord and get help today. Then one clean step at a time, one clean day at a time, you will, with God’s help beat the addiction, and do what you were created to do, be who you were created to be, and fulfill your purpose in life.