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Mindfulness & Addiction - A Mother's Journey

Updated: Mar 12, 2018

My son is battling with addiction and I'm sick right along with him. My amped-up despair, worry, emptiness, sadness and fear are overwhelming and impacting my physical and mental health. Sleepless nights? Yup. Racing heart? Oh yeah. Endless worrying? You bet. And what's worse (or better?), is my son is working hard and on the road to recovery but I'm still unwell.

True to myself, I'm throwing everything I've got at this "problem". My family is in counselling, my husband and I are going to Al-Anon, Amazon Prime has paid for itself with the amount of books I've ordered, and I almost booked us a four day spiritual retreat in Arizona before the family put the boots to this idea.

This is all helping me to understand the disease of addiction, how recovery is the addict's job not mine, and that all the love in the world can't make this go away. But it's my mindfulness practice that's keeping me sane.

Getting out of my head and into my body when stressed, worrying and catastrophizing has helped ground me during this incredibly difficult time. (I wish I was still in the 30 Day Mindfulness Challenge and tracking my Take 5's because I've done hundreds lately!). Whether it's following the breath, jumping off thought trains, or listening to Take 5, my mindfulness practice brings me back to the present moment where I can find some peace.

It's in these moments I can connect with my husband on something other than addiction, enjoy the outdoors, and remember I'm a parent to another amazing young man who needs me present in his life (despite what he says).

Whether you call it being mindful, present, in-the-moment, or taking things 'one day at a time' as they counsel in Al-Anon, this has become a life raft in a roiling, boiling sea of change and uncertainty. I'm extremely grateful for my practice under any name.

To learn more about how mindfulness benefits the addict and their loved ones, visit

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