Saturday, May 20, 2006

That Old Familiar Feeling

It's starting again.

That "maybe something is not quite right with AA" feeling.

The sense of dread when I think about having to go to meetings for the rest of my life.

The whisper at the edge of my mind that I need to figure out why I drink, and what triggers an "episode," which then launches the relapse, if I really, truly want to be sober.

Sure, I can go to a meeting and not drink.

I can do this one day at a time.

I don't want my life to be like this, though.

I want to get to the point where alcohol is no longer an issue.

I haven't smoked pot in over 20 years. I've NEVER had a relapse with marijuana. And I was addicted to it even worse than I was alcohol. I just never went back once I made the decision to quit. I knew I was ruining my life and my health through my continued addiction, so I quit. It wasn't easy at first. I still have the occasional dream where I'm smoking, and it feels good, but when I wake up, I'm so relieved that it's only a dream.

If I could do it with pot, can't I do it with alcohol? Just make the decision, and turn my back on it. Struggle the first year or so, but then, gradually, I'll begin to think less and less about it, and eventually, it will no longer be part of my conscious thought . . . I wonder.

I just hate feeling like I'm becoming part of "the cult of AA."

Friday, May 19, 2006

Welcome to the Neighborhood

Something kinda cool is happening: I'm finding other people in my very small neighborhood (about 100 houses) that are in "The Program." I knew about one already, because she's the lady I've asked to be my sponsor (which she's agreed to do, BTW).

Yesterday, my sponsor called me and asked me if I'd be okay with her giving my name to another girl in the neighborhood, who I've met, but don't know very well. I told her it was fine, and I assumed she was "brand new" (i.e., has been sober even less time than I have).

I went ahead and called her (which, if you knew me, you'd know that was very hard for me to do) a few minutes ago to see if she wanted to go to a meeting with me tonight (she does), and we talked for about 10 minutes. Turns out, she's been sober about 3 months, but it was SO easy to talk to her. We really connected.

Maybe this sounds crazy, but I'm so excited to be finding fellow alkies within my own neighborhood. It just underscores so much that we are definitely not alone in this fight!

Gotta go and get ready for the meeting. Later.

Thursday, May 18, 2006


I keep reading comments on other blogs of people who are still struggling with the whole surrender thing (as I am, still), which urge the blogger to "Do it for you, not someone else." I understand what's at the heart of this advice, basically that you have to want to get better for you, your life and your sanity (and your relationships will naturally improve as a result), and I know this is true, but something someone said at the meeting I attended Monday night really struck me.

The woman at the meeting said, that when she had just begun her recovery process, her sponsor asked her how in the world she could do this for herself, when she hated herself more than anyone else. Her sponsor encouraged her to do it for WHATEVER reason worked.

I was sitting there, still hungover from my "last hurrah" binge, and outright despising myself. Tears just rolled down my face at her words, because they resonated so deeply with where I was in that moment.

Sometimes, I think we do have to do it for someone else, or some reason other than ourselves. Ultimately, it becomes for ourselves that we do what it takes, but if I need to get to a meeting, and I don't feel like it, and don't want to do it for me in that moment, I hope I can do it because I don't want to hurt my husband again, or embarrass my friends in public again, or avoid seeing my mother on Mother's Day and hurting her feelings again.

I'm not saying I want the opinions and affections of others to be my motivation, at least not most of the time, but I think it is part of the reason, and it has to be, because when we get in a place where we're craving alcohol, or craving release from pain or stress, the old voice kicks in so quickly and so powerfully that I'm not even aware of it until I've already started planning to fail again, and then it's too late, because I don't care about me; I just care about getting drunk.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Tuesday Thankfulness

Today, I'm thankful for:

  1. The lady who I've asked to consider becoming my sponsor asked me to call her and wants me to go with her to a meeting tonight. She has 20+ years of sobriety, and is a truly beautiful person, inside and out. I am SO psyched!!

  2. There's a meeting to go to tonight.

  3. The meeting last night.

  4. That there's enough to do before the meeting, that I won't get bored or depressed. AND that there's no alcohol in the house, even if I did get bored or depressed!

  5. My husband's support in this.

  6. The support here among sobriety/recovery bloggers. You ALL rock!!!

  7. The AA Big Book. Wow!

  8. New beginnings.

  9. First steps.

  10. HP.

Monday, May 15, 2006

New Sobriety Date

My new sobriety date is today, May 15, 2006. Here's hoping it's also my last one (meaning I'll stick with it this time).

Well, I screwed up my courage and did the walk of shame tonight. Everyone was great. Most of the people there admitted to having relapsed before. So many of our stories are similar.

I'm SO grateful for AA. I just wish I didn't have this empty, sick feeling. I think it's because I was supposed to have stopped drinking last week, but my husband went out of town from last Wednesday until tonight, and of course, the first thing I did was to go out and buy more booze. I basically stayed drunk from Wednesday afternoon until last night. Totally missed Mother's Day, and haven't been able to get up my nerve to call my Mom and apologize.

Last night, I had drunk so much, I vomited until I got the dry heaves. This morning I was so weak and shaky, and my skin hurt, if that makes sense, plus it looked burnt. No telling how many brain cells I've killed.

The part that makes me so ashamed, though, is how I lied and deceived my husband again, and so far, I haven't gotten up the courage to tell him. I also feel like a really rotten daughter, and my Mom shouldn't have to suffer just because I'm ashamed.

This is the sickest disease, because it hurts so many people. I just want to get well and to stop screwing up my life, and the lives of the people I love.

Monday, May 08, 2006


Right now I'm grateful for:

  1. Other recovery blogs and bloggers who understand and encourage me and others like me.

  2. My husband's willingness to give me one more chance. Again.

  3. My sweet, patient, loving husband.

  4. That I can go back to AA, even though it will be hard to go into that first meeting where I have to admit screwing up to everyone, as well as to myself.

  5. AA.

  6. God, and his love and forgiveness.

Eating Humble Pie (It's Better than Drinking, Right?)

I appreciate so much the comments some of you have made, and the fact that you haven't preached at me, but have pointed out what I've known in my heart, but have been trying to ignore on an emotional and intellectual level.

I can't do this on my own. I don't even have the desire or the will to do it, especially by myself. I have to get back into AA, even though I still have reservations about some of the clichés and rhetoric and rituals that go along with it. I'm also put off by a few of the people I've met there (it's such a diverse group that there are just some people that rub me the wrong way, and I know I probably rub a few the wrong way, too).

But you know what the real truth is? I can't stand the thought of having to face the reality that I can never drink again if I truly want to beat the hold that alcohol has on me, and the way I'm letting it control me and ruin my life.

Because deep down—and I know I'm not alone in this—I want to be a person who can drink “normally,” even though I KNOW this isn't possible EVER. I still want it, though. How do I make this transformation from what I know intellectually, to what I believe, and embrace, and desire??

But maybe, that's not what is important right now.