Maggie Plett (left), whose son Zachary died of a fentanyl overdose at a Step by Step Recovery House in December, and her sisters Wendy Martinsen and Ilona Carroll, carry a photo of the 21-year-old on Wednesday's march. (Tracy Holmes photo)

LETTERS: Addicts are always here to help us heal

Editor:

Editor:

To hold space and spirit with parents, families, addicts and other concerned and caring citizens in the Overdose Awareness March in White Rock on Aug. 28 was both a privilege and an experience that deeply touched my heart. Angels do indeed walk among us.

Not every overdose springs from addiction or street drugs, but ours is a drug-dependent culture that looks to mask rather than to heal.

Change is desperately needed. If there is one gift that I could offer to ease but a little of the torment stamped quiet on the faces walking beside me that Wednesday, it would be my belief that those lost to addiction or to overdose are some of the bravest souls created.

It takes great courage to choose a hearkening path for the benefit of others.

I once wrote: “Being the mother of a drug addict is like having my heart ripped out one inch at a time.”

Since then I have come to see it as the highest honour my children could have given me, for they are a mirror in which I glimpse myself and only through their suffering was I able to understand my own – my fears, my judgments, my guilt.

Addicts are not always here to heal themselves, but they are always here to heal us. It is in their eyes (and in every senseless death) that we glimpse our shadow side and the world that we have created.

For this alone they deserve our gratitude, not our scorn. We are all here to walk each other home. Let their sacrifice not be in vain.

Many thanks to the White Rock/South Surrey Community Action Team (CAT) and Moms Stop the Harm for organizing the event. And to the wonderful people who voiced their support as we marched in compassion for those who could not. Love to you all.

Maureen Kerr, Surrey

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