As I watched the darkness descend, the distinction between sky and land disappeared. The murky gray color covered the landscape as if a blanket were smothering my existence. It suddenly grew very cold, and although seemingly impossible, I felt more alone than my life ever allowed before. The darkness entered the room, and the depths of my emptiness felt its presence. It brought me back, back so far that I curled up in a corner much like the position I occupied in my mother’s womb so many years ago. While familiar questions raced through my frustrated mind that night, I again realized my quest for an answer may never be over. I prayed over and over for God to take me quietly, without pain. I have suffered enough. My prayers went unanswered again. With the beginning of each day, we ask the same questions. We pray for answers; we beg to be shown the way to a better life. Alone and broken each night, we ask, we pray for a way out—a way to stop the cycle of destruction, loneliness, and shame. Thousands of times I have repeated this conduct, but for so long now, my futile struggle moves me further away from that which I strongly crave to obtain. Each day, my conduct—although aware of it being ill-advised—brings me to a dark and pathetic place. I cannot escape myself. I cannot forgive myself. Hopeless, hollow, and beat-up, I surrender once again in defeat. And so the cycle continues. My story is not unknown to mankind. It has repeated itself time and time again. So many have experienced it, and although much of it is now understood, it is often still unforgivable upon self-reflection. Only the alcoholic or addict has the ability, due to experience, to completely engage the true depth of its destruction and resulting emptiness although all in its path suffer relentlessly and often without recourse. This book documents, to the best of my ability, my road to addiction, destruction, and recovery.
Ronald Schur was born in 1963, the end of the Hippie era, beginning of Disco era, and the continuation of a happy and free society. It was socially acceptable to drink and drug recreationally. In 1983 Schur received his first college degree, in 1985 his second, and in 1988 his Juris Doctorate of Law from Syracuse. His first marriage produced 4 children, his second marriage, twins. Alcohol was always a social lubricant, but came to be as important to the author as oil and gas are to a automobile's engine. The slow process to full blown alcoholic was a sometimes secretive sometimes blistering path, common to alcoholics and addicts, but giving credence to the cliché, a goldfish rarely knows he lives in a fishbowl. January of 1990, the author started what became another reason to drink and be the life of the party, his law practice. Soon, clients and friends, and social activities surrounded the use and abuse of alcohol, and of course, drugs. When his father became terminally ill, and his marriage was a mess and in part a casualty of his addiction, his alcohol and drug use spiraled out of control. Add a second marriage, pain pills from numerous surgeries washed down by Vodka, and a relentless disease that has its own survival techniques and desire to thrive, and his life fell apart and he prayed for death, like so many before him. But the desire of this family man, a sober network and a forgiving community were just what this alcoholic needed to tame the demon and monsters from within. Now come and take this inspirational journey, and share the struggles and triumphs of this author on the road to sobriety.