Sometimes, it takes hitting rock bottom to realize that your alcoholism is a serious disease. One artist and muralist, Chris Rodriguez, blew up his hand while drunk to learn how deep his addiction got. Rodriguez is an example of a former alcoholic who used what happened to him as a way to inspire others through his art and his courage to better himself.
In his twenties, Rodriguez battled alcoholism and he was in sobriety for three months, but then relapsed shortly before his life changed forever. In January 2018, Rodriguez lit up a stick of dynamite that was left over from a previous summer in his garage when he was drunk. After drinking all day, he did not realize that the dynamite did not have a wick. When he tried to light it, it exploded instantly, blowing off his left hand. Because the doctors could not save any part of his hand, they had no choice but to amputate it.
After his accident, Rodriguez developed anxiety and depression which led him to drink again. On April 2018, he realized that he needed to stay sober for good if he was going to make an impact in the art community. Rodriguez had been passionate about art since he got into graffiti in high school. He knew that if he continued to drink that the alcohol would eventually kill him. Because it was his non-dominant hand that was affected, he was still about to paint after his accident with his dominant. Rodriguez now spends his days painting large scale murals using ladders, lifts, and scaffolding all one-handed. He thanks the accident and his two children for turning his life around towards the better.
Rodriguez wants people to learn from his accident and to never give up no matter what. What we can learn from Rodriguez’s story is how his alcoholism led him to tragically lose a limb because he was not in the right mind to be careful when using an explosive. He tackled mental illness as a result of losing a limb, but still decided to do something with his life instead of letting his alcoholism consume him. Rodriguez’s story proves that everyone has the potential to better themselves no matter how far into their addiction they get. Art was therapeutic for Rodriguez. By finding something that makes you stand out against your addiction, you as well can beat this struggle.
Located in Huntington Beach, California, Simple Recovery’s mission is to help clients struggling with addiction and mental illness to face their fears, understanding your addiction, and inspiring them to realize how achievable a sober life can be. With the help of a staff with first-hand recovery experience, this evidence-based treatment program includes different modes of recreational therapy for clients and their families in the beautiful surf-city environment. For more information, please call us 844-201-8549 as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.