Opinion

A Final Goodbye to Opiates

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A Final Goodbye to Opiates

Sept. 5, 2023
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By Miranda Stern

Ms. Stern is a documentary filmmaker.

For most of my adult life, I’ve struggled with an opiate addiction of some form. But I’m one of the lucky ones, because I’m still here.

The dark descent into the nefarious underworld of heroin addiction is well documented, but the challenging and deeply personal world of recovery and hope is rarely seen. This short documentary is a collaboration between my husband and me as we turn the camera inward and document my attempt to say a final goodbye to the synthetic opiates that have kept me off heroin for the past six years.

Part of the motivation for making this film came from a need to understand what dictates one’s chances of sobriety. Why is it that some people make it and others don’t, despite their endless efforts? What happens when, at some point, people are able to arrest this insidious disease and get their lives back?

Recovery takes a lot of time, effort and patience from those in recovery and from their loved ones. There’s no quick fix, shortcut or wave of a magic wand to make it go away. Recovery isn’t simply about being clean; it’s also about connection. Authentic and meaningful connection — with oneself, with others and with something outside of oneself. I’m still working on that last one, but I think I got somewhere close to it while making this film.

Miranda Stern is a filmmaker based in the United Kingdom.

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