No matter how difficult today is, I won’t regret not drinking tomorrow.
Have I ever had difficult “today’s?” Yes too many to count. My definition of difficult has certainly changed over time. When I was young in sobriety practically everything seemed difficult:
While drinking only two things drove my existence: keep my job and drink wine. Nothing else mattered. I had drank me up.
My life drastically changed once sober. My apartment no longer felt like a self imposed dungeon. It was merely a place I slept. I was rarely home.
Every day I didn’t drink amazed me. I slowly started to feel human again. Lovely, warm and genuine people in A.A. welcome me repeatedly. When people shared I listened intently. I consistently heard I could get well and stay sober. “No matter what” was constantly driven home.
I fondly remember the joys of my early sobriety. Thankfully I found many people to listen to me and to learn from. I did most things asked of me. It helped me feel a part of.
I did many childish things when new. I was an infant experiencing a brand-new life. I had to learn from my own sidesteps and pitfalls. I wrote, I inventoried, and went to tons of meetings. I learned about me, the good and bad things of my character. I had character! Who knew?
As my littermates all started to go back to drinking this certainly was difficult. I lost the connection I’d had with them. We were in different mindsets.
There was so much busyness in my head. Often times I felt as if it was going to explode. I felt as if I’d never feel better. I wanted to be okay. I wanted the promises, peace of mind and I wanted it all now! I sometimes forgot that the biggest thing I had was physical sobriety. I constantly compared my insides to others and always ended up short.
I kept trudging as I was told to, one step, one day, on and on. At some point around three years or so I felt a little better. I had a host of friends and many acquaintances. By this point I’d had several commitments each and every one helped me learn how to participate and assist in our meetings.
In my first year my sponsor told me that someone he sponsored, Carol had committed suicide with pills. Wow when they said “jails, institutions and death” they meant it. I didn’t realize that people could feel hopeless enough to actually kill themselves. My strength was always found in the kind loving spirituality of the old-timers. They pulled me (us) along and told us we could stay no matter what.
A.A.’s given me numerous gifts over the years. Not drinking being first and foremost. The gift of time (sobriety) is I’ve gained my own sober experience, knowledge, wisdom and truth. It’s also awesome to feel the way my mind shifts as I age (years). I’m always learning new things.
I’ve made decisions both good and bad. I have however stayed sober. It’s my life. Every decision I’ve made is now part of my own experience. No dress rehearsal. No rewrites.
I share it freely with those who I come into contact with and are interested in talking. I make amends when necessary, write, attend meetings and work with a sponsor. I do as much as I can.
Turns out that foundation I heard so much about as a newcomer is true. I hope I never have to regret drinking as opposed to getting through yet another one day at a time with my fellows.