Questions About What Sobriety Means

Early in recovery, I was asked to speak to a group of high school students in our church about how I got sober. I had not been around the program long enough to know AA’s Twelve Traditions. At the end of the talk, a young woman came up to me, shaking her head in unbelief: “You mean you can never ever have another drink?”

I didn’t say that – but that’s what she heard — and her question unnerved me.

I didn’t have enough sobriety to predict how long I would stay sober. I knew enough to say, “One day at a time is what I am banking on.”

Why she unnerved me, was I knew myself: My modus operandi is too often to start something with enthusiasm that wanes when the going gets hard. Recovery is a daily commitment.

I had about six months by then, and I could see the pink cloud was dissipating. I thought I knew a lot about recovery, having been in AlAnon for several years — The Fourth Step was coming; I didn’t want to be a drunk – but I missed the social aura that goes with drinking.

The high schooler’s innocent question made me wonder how willing I was to change me. What kind of me would I be if I could never ever have another drink?

My sponsor asked me, “What kind of me would I be if I didn’t stop drinking?”

A better question for sure, as I began to accept that sobriety was a gift I could take hold of each day because I am learning to let go of alcohol, and its dodgy promises.

I began to think through what a drink would mean. One drink wasn’t going to do it for me. Never had, never would.

Thinking through the next drink meant I needed to go beyond imagining the relief or pleasure I hoped it would bring – and imagine what a drink could do to me – physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I knew what the last drink had done, and I didn’t want to go back to that person prison.

So does recovery mean I can never ever have another drink ever?

No . . . recovery means I have a choice. (Falling Down Holes Need Not Be a Given)

So, I choose to believe nothing is so bad, today that a drink won’t make it worse. 

What kind of choices are you finding in recovery, dear reader?


Love in Christ,

Sober and Grateful

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Questions About What Sobriety Means