90 Days Better Than Cash
“It is no disproof of one’s presentiment of an ultimate liberation if the next day one’s imprisonment continues on unchanged, or is even made straiter, or if it is even expressly stated that it will never end. All this can rather be the necessary preliminary to an ultimate liberation.” Franz Kafka, Diaries, January 9. 1920
This morning at two a.m. I awoke extremely thirsty. When I got up and looked in the mirror, I panicked, and my thoughts propelled back to my drinking days. I felt a bit off; my head hurt, and I needed water. It was probably sinus pressure, but I immediately questioned myself, “Oh, God, I didn’t drink last night did I?” Once I got my bearings and turned up my water bottle, I immediately started sobbing. No, I didn’t drink last night. Today I have 90 days of sobriety. This is not my first time celebrating 90 days without a drink, and I have probably had 90 days of sobriety before in my recovery journey, but today is the first time I have celebrated and loved my sobriety. In the past, I drudged along marking the days with a dispirited movement forward. In recovery, it is not uncommon to have drinking or using dreams, and it is probably not uncommon to wake up with the fear that one has been drinking too. Maybe this is the necessary preliminary to real liberation from drink. I was imprisoned for so long by alcohol and this disease, and I am grateful for the space immediately following this frightening moment. This space brought me enormous relief. Alcohol no longer has to be my bête noire, my dark adversary. I do not have to fear alcohol. I can replace fear with sobriety. I can walk erect and not stay in straits of fear; I can face the day with confidence because I have the solution. The solution is to continue to take the suggestions set before me in my 12 step fellowship, do the work and live. Recovery is quite simple, and it is liberating. It does work if you work it.