With the #metoo movement on our radar — it is perfect timing for our feature story.

I imagine some type of trauma is a part of every addict and alcoholics story. While it can be an uncomfortable topic to talk about openly, it is crucial for a healthy and strong recovery to do so.

When producing this issue, I read every word of our feature, Interweaving Cycles of Addiction and Trauma by Claudia Black. And — I read it again.

Both times, memories from my past surfaced. Some, I had done the work on — others had been locked away in the vault for years. What was interesting to me as memories came back, I no longer felt the rage, anger or shame. While I physically felt the ‘chills’ for a few seconds, there wasn’t any fear. Maybe that is forgiveness at work.

It is no surprise I sought out drugs and alcohol to soothe the pain. Growing up I had no way to process my feelings, let alone speak them out loud to my caregivers. I carried the emotional scars for a long time and used them as an excuse for bad behaviors. In recovery, I gained the willingness to share who I really am; with sponsors, therapists and people I trust.

These powerful relationships have given me the courage to share my story with others and continue to heal. We all deserve to heal.

Happy Valentines readers!