I have no regrets and don’t look back wondering ‘why’ anymore. I went back and re-read all the blogs from the very beginning until the one year sober date. What I found out after reading all the stories was a man that was totally defeated by drinking and substance abuse… and was a coward in how he was facing his problems. A guy with a good heart for the most part but had really not takin ownership of his real issues. Casting blame anywhere it would stick, hoping someone else would jump in and fix his problem. It doesn’t work like that. There was a lot of fear and confusion as I kept reading the guys battle with alcohol and drugs. Wow… I thought how pathetic is this dude he can’t seem to get a grip on reality and seems to be stuck in a mud hole without anyone around. Was he a little weak… a little desperate… just plumb stupid?
Then I saw a person slowly begin to change and grow more confident as the weeks turned into months. It wasn’t easy but then overcoming failure takes a lot of work… and belief in yourself. Ya know that is the single most important step (what I’ve learned) is believin in yourself. I remember thinkin yeah this guy is sober but so what… what now? An addict spends a lot of time kickin themselves or beatin themselves up cause we think we are nothin more than a failure and things will never get better. Ya know it’s easy ta stay in that place, the place where we just give up and keep wallowing in our own misery. Why… cause you don’t haveta change anything. It’s like admitting you have a problem to begin with, that’s easy, it’s easy to keep drinking or shooting pills to cope. And yeah I’m an alcoholic and I know it, shoot everyone knows it, so what? It’s the next step doin something about it that makes the biggest impact. Ya know the jump is only half of the battle… I mean you’re gonna hit the water at some point and that is gonna hurt like hell.
But that’s how it works, wish there was an easier way but there isn’t. However this is when things do change and your life does get better. You haveta finish the chapter and then go on to the next. I think a lot of folks keep re-reading the same chapter not really movin forward. They stay in the safe mode of recovery ya know, I don’t want to be in recovery for the rest of my life, I want to put an “ed” at the end of my walk.
When I stop to think about the road this guy was on and the trouble he had caused others, people who cared about him, people that loved him. They just didn’t know how to help or should they’ve or could they’ve of. All they could do is wait… and wait… watching and waiting. Here’s the thing tho, this is when change happens, you haveta forgive yourself (which this guy has come to learn the hard way) is the most important step in healing, it’s the key to movin on and getting healthy. It’s also one of the most difficult things to do. Ya know admitting the obvious and then takin action right? How do you move on when the one thing you were good at didn’t really matter much. Wasted years, shattered lives, broken hearts, unfulfilled dreams, promises never kept and relationships tossed aside. How do you fix that? Truth is you can’t until you start fixin yourself and that is easier said than done. You haveta start somewhere and forgiveness is the best place to begin that process. But how do you do that… you haveta let it go, you take that guilt off your shoulders and say to yourself I am done, I can’t carry this any longer, I just can’t bare this pain any more. Then it happens… it finally happens… by gosh you actually move on. Why did it take so flippin long… why didn’t I just do this from the very beginning? Who knows why? Pride perhaps, the point is you do get better and whatever you broke eventually heals, if you let it. But man you gotta let it, you gotta move on, stop turnin around and feelin sorry for yourself. The past never changes.
You can’t get better if you’re always looking over your shoulder. To me it’s not how ya run the race it’s just that you cross the finish line at some point. If an organized step program works for you… awesome, if it doesn’t then great just get better, just cross the finish line. There is a final chapter in every book. I agree recovery is a process but eventually at some point along the road you’ll be recovered. I refuse to let alcohol define me and ya know it will not anymore. There are twelve (or however many) steps you’re taking but sooner or later your standin on flat ground again. There’s no need to re-climb the stairs if you’ve already reached the top, I mean your done right… move forward.
For me it really doesn’t matter how ya play the game it’s the final score that counts.