Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Non-Fiction: Becoming Normal by Mark Edick

If the concepts of recovery and fitting in and being normal do not resonate for you, chances are Becoming Normal (Central Recovery Press) is not a book that needs to be added to your shelves. The audience for this book is quite specific, but it’s also large and mostly under-serviced. The central theme in this personal memoir is learning how to regain your life and re-find your way after addiction. It is, in a way, beyond recovery, which is actually the very first steps.

Becoming Normal is a self-portrait of someone successfully and simply working their program day by day. The beauty comes in the poignant way Edick relates his recovery: one day at a time.
For me, normal once meant drinking and drugging. Mood- and mind-altering substances, including alcohol, brought me to my knees. My addiction had many manifestations, but a single common thread. Its power lay in what I thought of myself, what I thought others thought of me, and my reaction to what I was thinking. This is my story -- how I went from being a drunk to being someone who chooses not to drink. My story is about my old idea of normal and how, through recovery, I was able to define and re-create my new understanding of what I believe normal is.
There is a certain peaceful clarity in Edick’s voice. Those who struggle with the issues covered here might find comfort in Edick’s calm and simple telling of his personal struggle.

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