Dear Addiction,

A couple of years ago I would have sworn that you and I would never have a close relationship. I would have even prayed that our paths never met. In my narrative practice apprenticeship journey, I had made up my mind that I will never have to deal with you. I didn’t want anything to do with you. I still wonder how you managed to get under my skin but I think I have a faint idea of how it came about.

When I saw how you were so determined at destroying a bright future of an intelligent, witty and driven young man who came to be my first client battling with you. I became even more petrified and didn’t want anything to do with you. But then my journey with this young man was teaching more about myself than it taught me about you. It opened my eyes to see the beauty and the excellence that you see and feel threatened by in others. Unlike you, I was not threatened but motivated by the strength and wittiness of those you try to destroy. I got fuelled by their determination and wanted to help walk with them and hold their hands. I felt defeated most times but the drive I could see even through my client’s droopy hopeless eyes at times, held me up.

Five years later, I’m back head-to-head with you. This time with a group of magnificent people. Mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, friends, professionals, creatives, people from all sorts of walks. You pull them down and yet they get up again. Their love, smiles, strives, hopes, dreams, vulnerability they openly share with me make them my family. I learn a lot from them as I learned a lot from my first client. Yes, my relationship with you may not be a personal one but it is very close. As I have become close to those whose hopes and dreams you try to destroy.

And yes, this is one long journey so it would seem but this time I’ll walk it without your intimidation. For I learn more and more about your trick every day.

I’m buckled up and ready for whatever bumpy road we are going to have.

For the love of those I journey with in fight against you.

Nthabeleng.