Clean and serene in a crazy world
Okay, so the chains of addiction have been broken and life as a sober man is beyond any high ever experienced. Gone are the hangovers, the headaches, the retching, the lies, the fears, the pain, the loneliness, the self-loathing, the searching, the desperation. Gone are the thoughts of suicide, the fits of anger, the desire to hurt another person. All that is in the past – or is it?
Just because I am not drinking or drugging does not mean I am normal and healthy. My demons continue to reside in that space within waiting an opportunity to emerge and control just as before. Alcoholism is cunning, baffling, and powerful. My disease wants to see me dead or insane. Have I accepted that? Or do I entertain the thought that maybe after years of sobriety I could possibly drink again – only this time as a social drinker?
Several of my dear friends thought so. They went out to do more field research. A few returned to the fellowship to tell me about it, but some did not. Some died in accidents, some died from cirrhosis or other alcohol-related health issues, some overdosed, some committed suicide. I am not willing to take that risk to learn if I have become a social drinker. Why would I? Life is too good and there is too much work to be done in my remaining years.
It’s all about commitment. My commitment to sobriety and my Higher Power is infinitely stronger today than my innate tendency to be addicted. I refuse to believe that I am cured. That brokenness which led me through 17 years of alcoholic insanity is continuing to be healed, but I am not yet cured. That cure will take place on the day I take my last breath in this life. Then I can claim freedom and perfection.
“No one among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles. We are not saints. The point is, that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines. We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection.” pg 60 ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS