Casualties of war
As Christmas approaches and the sentiments of Peace on Earth and Goodwill to all Men gains seasonal credence, one can forget the carnage surrounding those engaged in personal battles the world over.
Take the 14-bedded Edward Myers Detoxification Unit at the Harplands Hospital in Stoke upon Trent. This centre sees the fall-out of those who have been engaged in a colossal conflict and subsequently been decimated because of it.
But who have the in-patients been in battle with?
The answer is addiction of course.
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One does not have to watch the 'Thriller' video by Michael Jackson to see the zombified (in this instant because of substance misuse).
At Edward Myers there are blackened and blood shot yellow faces, distended stomachs (from a bloated liver) legs resembling a pin cushion and many barely able to walk because of their injuries.
The patient (sometimes sedated) could even be shell-shocked or suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (not forgetting that they were pitted against a powerful and determined enemy that had taken greater personage than themselves to the grave).
However bruised, battered and sometimes disfigured, the deluded imagine that a brief respite recharging against the enemy (sometimes under the illusion of perhaps going back to work) will put them in good stead to resume the fray once again.
Keeping in mind of course that, that same enemy is armed with a powerful ally, as in an army of different substances, the multi-national, the media, traditional culture and even intergovernmental ignorance.
Take it from the old embattled war-horses who bear the scars but have lived to tell the tale.
Surrender and seek a long-term solution to conquer your addiction; it's a war you can never win.