It's As Simple As Working The Steps
“The world is conquered and we have watched it with open eyes. We can therefore quietly turn away and live on.” Franz Kafka (Diaries)
I have spent time over the years worrying and analyzing how I am going to stay sober. It seems as easy as, “just don’t drink,” but there is so much more to it than that. For this alcoholic I kept going back out to drink because I thought each time it would be different. I thought I would be successful. Once I take the first drink the compulsion to drink is set and I have no defense. I must have a 2nd, 3rd, 4th and so on. After not drinking from December 2013 until May 2015, once again, I thought I could drink “normally.” In those 17 months of not drinking I had forgotten what happens when I drink. It started with a simple thought that I could have a nice glass of red wine to relax. I would even use the measuring cup to measure my 6 ounces which I have been told is great for heart health. I felt such triumph the first night of my success that the next night I rewarded myself with two 6 ounces glasses of wine. Each night after that my rewards increased by ounces and my descent was rapid. I even did what all good alcoholics do. I changed to beer or vodka because I do better with those than wine. When beer and vodka failed me I went back to my love, my wine. When I made it back into the rooms of my 12 Step program I could easily say that I was an alcoholic. I had said this many times over the years. What I had to do was really believe without any doubts or reservations that my life had become unmanageable. As I pondered this in my hungover state I had to think about when I started to drink again in May 2015 until my last drink October 30, 2015. I had started with great hopes of being successful and being able to stop at one, or at the most, 2 drinks which led to me from point A-measuring my alcohol to point B-drinking with reckless abandon without stopping. My life had become unmanageable. I was controlled by alcohol. Not only was I unable to stop my drinking, but drinking made me say and do things only a drunk could do. In a short 5 months I had learned first hand how progressive the disease of alcoholism is. I had become a very sick person. Coming back to the 12 Step program I have learned many things, but the most important is that the steps are there for me to win. To Live. I will never be cured, but I do not have to drink today if I follow a few suggestions. It is as simple as that. Because other alcoholics paved a way before me, I can move on and live.