Another June

“You’re not nothin’. You are not nothin’. You’re a good man, and God has given you a second chance to make things right, John. This is your chance, honey.” – June Carter, Walk the Line

It’s difficult to explain believing.

If I tell you that one of the reasons I did not leave Dave back then was because I believed that he wasn’t going to stay an addict forever, and then I tell you that he struggled for several more years after the events of my last posts, you might wonder about my beliefs.

But it’s true. I believed.

I believed God had made Dave for better things. That his life was not going to be wasted by drugs. That our family would heal. That all of our struggles had a purpose.  That this wasn’t the end of us. I believed all of those things.

Not that I always acted like I believed. I hurled plenty of “Curse God and die!” at him.

But I also saw the defeat. The trying and failing. And the despair that comes from that.

I believed that if I left him, he’d give up and end up in a gutter somewhere. Dave needed encouragement. He needed to know that if he took the tortuous journey through withdrawal and recovery, his family would be there at the other end. I knew this was true.

I failed at it over and over and over. And I doubted more than I’d like to admit. But I stayed, in part, because I believed. And it was awful. But it was worth it.

* * * * *

People say things . . . 

“If my husband ever did that, I’d leave him in a heartbeat,” and “Honey, dump his sorry behind!”

I heard that at social services when Dave was out of work for 5 months. And again in 2007. I saw it on the face of the intake lady when I dropped him off for three weeks of rehab in a hospital on the other side of the state. I overheard people talk about addicts as losers that will never change.

Dave heard those things, too. And he agreed because he felt the same way about himself. There wasn’t a lot of encouragement to believe that any good would come of this whole mess.

But everyone needs someone to believe in them. 

Besides, I wanted to be there when he got back on top of the world. And I didn’t want some other woman reaping the benefits of my tears . . .

* * * * *

We cry through the emotional parts of 2 hour movies and think the story is inspiring and amazing. We love stories with happy endings. And we respect couples who make it through the ring of fire, together.

But it’s hard to watch in real life. It takes a whole lot longer.

And it’s not scripted.

Believing isn’t always pretty.

And sometimes, no matter how hard you believe, it doesn’t turn out the way you hope.

8 thoughts on “Another June”

  • My perspective of the addiction and addicts is not as personal as yours but I do know the necessity to believe in them and lead them to believe in themselves. Often, belief in themselves has to come before they can believe in God. Yours is a personal story and one I’m glad you shared. Thank you.

  • Deb, thanks so much for your transparency in this blog. I don’t know if you knew this but I was a cocaine and crystal meth addict before I knew the Lord and then struggled still with it for some time after I became a believer. I still remember very clearly the feelings of still being high in church on Sunday mornings and how much I hated myself for it. Drugs mess with our souls in ways that nothing else does… thank God that He is able to heal those places in our souls. What a wonderful testimony about the Lord.

  • Addiction is such a vicious disease. Thank you for the courage and truth shown in this blog. There is something quite beautiful (and I mean that in the fullest, deepest sense of the word) about the story you are telling and the lives you are living. Believing isn’t always pretty… but perhaps it is beautiful.

  • I cannot tell you HOW much I love reading your words and how inspiring they are. Not only because I already love you guys, but because your story is such an amazing and beautiful testimony of grace and healing and commitment…Commitment from our Lord to sustain us and commitment on yours and Dave’s behalf to work through this together and to stay together. Love. love. love you and reading this.

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