Here’s a thank-you note to a British mystery — Every once in awhile art accurately reflects the hell addiction is.
Watching a character in new series Karen Pirie spiral through decades of drinking and drugging, I connected with his . . . choices and compulsions.
The character didn’t start out wanting to overdose; he just wanted to party.
My life’s ambition was not to be a drunk — I just wanted to drink . . . like a lady.
The last segment of the character’s anguish showed me what the downward descent of choosing to keep drinking just might be. I didn’t want that — to end up alienated and isolated; dead. I just wanted to drink . . . like a lady.
What’s so bad about my wanting that, anyway — knowing what it was doing to the ladies in my family?
“You have some choices,” AA’s told me when I first went around the program: “insanity, jail or death,” and I took them at their word — I had seen the insanity bit in my family; I was terrified of jail, and I wasn’t ready to die.
So I did what they told me: don’t drink, get to a meeting and pray.
That character, consumed by guilt and fear, kept downing booze and pills to shut up the uproar in his head — his demons kept reminding him of all the stupid, mean, careless, narcissistic choices he made. I could relate —
I never got why Frank Sinatra could just warble, “Regrets . . . I’ve had a few . . .”
Maybe that’s the difference between social drinkers and drunks?
I don’t know — but I do know that as I watched the drama of a man’s overdose unfold, I was flooded with gratitude. There, but for the Grace of God, I could have, and would have gone.
Seriously — I was on that elevator that took him down; I was never, ever, ever a social drinker.
Thank You God for placing the person in my life who suggested I didn’t have to ride it all the way to the bottom. God, that was a gift!
A Few More Thank You’s
Thank you, too, God for sticking with me while I kept looking for an easier softer way to be that social drinker everybody else seems to be.
Forgive me my trespasses —as You teach me to forgive others who trespass against me.
Thank you too for not leaving me to my choices when I spent way too long avoiding the Steps.
So, here’s my thank you note to my Higher Power, and all the folks who suit up, show up and grow up so I can make better choices in crazy, uncertain times. And the daily help and hope you give!
You helped me shift my outlook from enduring abstinence to enjoying sobriety.
And thank you for the character in that mystery who showed what staying on that elevator can be.
Thank you dear reader — for reading to the end — How are YOU doing?!
Love in Christ,
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