The story you are about to read is a work of fiction, a mosaic of truths and fabrications. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental or intended for narrative flourish. Dear L, The irony is rich, isn’t it? That I sit here in a rehab in the heart of Gauteng, penning down tormented lines to a specter. Since I stumbled gracelessly into sobriety, these four whitewashed walls in Benoni have become my confessional chamber, where your memory is both priest and penance. My journey here, it’s been a comedy of sorts, the dark variety, where one chases their own tail down Boksburg avenues and ends up paying a princely sum to reclaim what was freely theirs: sanity, clarity, life. I often imagine narrating my sordid tale to patrons of a dingy Kempton Park dive, eliciting gasps and chuckles, the cheap thrill of shock value. But no story, no matter how engrossing, can serenade back the dead or untwine the knots in one’s spirit. In this East Rand sanctuary, they echo with a mantra, “Forgiveness, acceptance, growth.” It’s a catchy triad, but guilt’s weighty anchor drags me down each time I whisper your name. Can you believe it? An unreliable narrator to my own life, I’ve painted a scene where the victim clutches to forgiveness like a cherished locket, yet the lock is jammed and the locksmith long gone. Each sunrise mocks me with a minstrel’s repetition, a Groundhog Day of mundane rehab routines. They profess wellness here, a place for troubled souls, but the air is steeped with a silent indictment, invisible walls whispering stories as old as time – or at least as old as the perils of addiction. I’m constructing you an altar of apologies, built by a man who’s found a peculiar camaraderie with the worn-out floorboards and the scratchy bed linens. Our companions, fellow pilgrims in recovery, weave tales of misadventure and redemption like threadbare tapestries. If this is healing, it’s laced with a profound ache, a sober realization. Estranged from intoxication, I swim in an ocean of clarity wherein resides a Leviathan named Regret. They forgot to mention this beast in the brochure. No, no mention of the constant companion that accompanies you into therapy sessions, group chats, even haunts you during the ever-pleasant communal dining experience. Yet, as I reckon with shadows, I chuckle at the poster on the wall, ‘Conquer Your Demons in Johannesburg’s Serene Suburbs.’ If only they knew, demons fancy a jaunt in the suburbs as much as basking in the squalor of urban decay. Remember our plans to renew vows in that quaint chapel on the outskirts? A cruel jest by the universe that yours truly would be frequenting a different sort of sanctuary, uttering promises to specters. But what sober tales can match the high drama of intoxicated escapades? For aren’t we all just narrators frantically scripting our next chapter, seeking the treasure trove of ‘what could be,’ whilst navigating the maelstrom of ‘what is’? So here’s to you, my vanished muse, in this, my farewell epistle, unsent and unread. In this Johannesburg rehab haven, hope wrestles despair, and amid the tension, freedom is birthed. Perhaps one day, these letters, these candid glimpses into a soul reborn, will be more than private epitaphs. Until then, they rest, a testament to a traveler in search of reconciliation’s sweet elixir, within the embrace of Gauteng’s unassuming embrace. Yours, in mindful recovery, M Displaced mirth and solemn reflections aside, this narrative delves into the heart of the drug and alcohol rehabilitation experience. The locales and emotions may be all too real, though the names are not. May the reader find solace, humor, and enlightenment within these fabricated lines. Discover renewed clarity and embark on the path to recovery at our premier Benoni rehab center—a peaceful refuge amidst the dynamic regions of Boksburg, Kempton Park, and Edenvale. Offering a supportive haven for those struggling with the weights of addiction, our East Rand sanctuary provides the foundation for wellness with comprehensive therapies and a nurturing environment shaped for healing. Embrace forgiveness, acceptance, and growth, resolving to conquer your demons in the serene suburbs of Johannesburg. Begin the sober journey of mindful recovery. Connect with us for hope and help at or call +27798378484 or +27828863996, and find support through our WhatsApp link.