How much longer can Edie Falco’s “Nurse Jackie” remain on the road to ruin without arriving? For three entertaining seasons now, viewers have seen Jackie’s pill addiction leading her into more and more lies and worse and worse problems, personally and professionally. So, with Season 4 of the Showtime series ready to be unveiled April 8, one wonders, how much longer can she keep going?
“Everybody’s tolerance for the insanity of addiction is different,” points out the Emmy-winning star. “We’ll see her still fumbling around to find out exactly what her bottom is, what her last straw is.”
But if she rehabs or overdoses, the show is over, right?
Not at all, assures Falco, 20 years sober this year and a long-time proponent of 12-step programs. “I’m living proof of life after addiction,” she says. “Actually, for a lot of people, the real insanity of life is when they quit drugs. What they get to is what was underneath it all the time, and they have to deal with that without anesthetizing themselves.”
In the wake of Whitney Houston’s death, Falco is all the more mindful of how much she values her sobriety. “As I’ve spoken to a lot of other recovering people, I feel tremendous gratitude,” she tells us. “Why can some of us make it out of the quicksand, and others can’t? I don’t know. Like many people, I have some friends who still can’t quite pull themselves out.”
She’s talked before about the necessity of “getting out of your own way” to survive and thrive. What does that mean? How does a person get out of his or her own way?
“It involves a great deal of relaxation, a great deal of trust and faith,” she replies. “It’s not much more than a decision, really. You don’t have to have proof that it works, you have to decide ‘This will work.’ What needs to get done will get done. You will be given the impulses you will need to get through your life. And the muscles to do that get stronger and stronger the more you do it.”
For those who wish to catch up, Season 3 of “Nurse Jackie” is newly out on DVD.