When I put the drink down, I worried what was I going to do with myself?
I mean, drinking was how rewarded myself and coped – drinking was the magic door through which I could enter, acting on my fantasies. It took me awhile to realize that self- rewards, muddling through and living in fantasies are not the same as life in the real world.
Alcohol, and the juvenile mind-set that saw drinking as a prerogative – even a duty, was a shaky foundation upon which to build an education or perform a job; or, be a loving spouse or parent. But I wasn’t about to let go of the one thing that was an ever-so comfortable crutch. (Even if it tripped me up more frequently!)
I was on a path that was becoming increasingly . . . complicated. King Solomon called that path folly.
Folly is characterized by thoughtless decisions to pursue a course that is briefly pleasurable, but ultimately painful. (Ed Weld, Addictions: Banquet in the Grave, p 59)
That might sound pompous – especially when all I was doing was having a drink or two focusing on when and how I could access the one thing that would never disappoint me – and that would meet all my needs.
Mercifully, because I had been around AA, through being a part of Al-Anon, I learned I did not have to take the elevator to the depths alcoholism can take a person. Mercifully, through a Bible study I had come to believe that the Hand of God would fill my emptiness.
I get myself into trouble emotionally when I forget to look to Him to fill all that I expected alcohol – or people and things — to do. But each day is a choice – whether to throw myself a pity party, and indulge a dry drunk, or practice new habits.
The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken. — Samuel Johnson
Working the Twelve Steps – going to meetings and prayer can become life –sustaining habits that will give me good things to embrace – to hold tight to — when I put the drinks down. A new habit of working the program and seeking wisdom is a
“. . . good habit, and good habits — just like bad ones — strengthen with use and time. Today I will strive to make prayer a habit. (In God’s Care)
And GOD HELP ME is a great prayer!
The Lord longs to be gracious to you; He rises to show you compassion. (Isaiah 30:1)
Thanks for reading! What has filled your hand and heart, gentle reader if you decided to put the drink dow?
Love in Christ
Sober and Grateful