“I’m a gal that doesn’t need a drink until she’s had a drink.”
There is a woman in a meeting that I attend who says this before she takes her turn speaking. It is a true reminder of the power of just one drink. Personally, I can be strong and have logical thinking and willpower as long as I stay away from that alcohol. If I were to talk myself into having just one and forget about the control it can have over me, my mind would be consumed with thoughts of another drink. Consumed with how, when and where can I get my next fix?
How many things in our lives take total control of our minds? How many things talk us into doing something that is logically irrational, but we still think that doing it would be the best thing to do. What did it take you to give up something that dragged you down so far into a hole that getting yourself out took incredible strength, courage and pain? You have poured out blood, sweat and tears, but somewhere deep within is still a desire to have just one. Really, how can one little ole drink hurt me? Let me count the ways.
- I’ll only have one.
- I’ll only have one more.
- I just had one yesterday. I can just have one again today.
- No one will know.
- I’ll just be sober tomorrow.
- I can handle it differently today.
- I’m happier today. Yesterday I just drank to escape.
- Now I’m older, wiser and more mature.
- I drank too much because I was bored and my life sucked.
- I can handle beer and wine. It’s hard liquor that got me drunk.
- My problem was driving while intoxicated. I just won’t drive after I drink.
- I want to fit in with my friends.
- Suzie quit and now she’s drinking normally.
- I just wanted a taste.
- It has been years.
These are some little white lies that my head can tell me if I lose my resolve and discontinue my commitment to stay healthy in body, mind and soul. If I don’t continue to choose the next right thing. It’s essential for me to do everything that is needed to continue to fight and build my resistance.
I’ve discovered that one of the best ways for me to build that wall of resistance is to help others on their journey of recovery. To be there for them whenever they need assistance or guidance. To lend that helping hand — or that helping hoof — in my case. If I get into a funk and start getting into the poor me’s, I reach out to someone in need; or call a friend with a listening ear. I’m learning that listening to others helps get my mind back to what’s important. And I’m able to put a comma behind all of those thoughts like:
- I’ve never had just one.
- You know you’ll drink the whole bottle.
- By tomorrow I’ll be drinking a whole fifth again.
- God will know.
- You’ll put it off another day.
- It’ll be worst this time.
- It’ll take your happiness away.
- It’s cunning, baffling and powerful, no matter what your age.
- You’ll create another excuse to drink.
- I’ll start with beer and wine and graduate to liquor.
- I just need to get home. I’ll drive slowly.
- My friends don’t want me drinking again. If they do, they aren’t my friends.
- Suzie’s hiding her drinks.
- A taste will turn into a bottle.
- It only takes a day to screw up the past, present and future.
For every action there is a reaction. For me it’s best to stay on my journey. To not give into all the temptations. I know that a drink will only make my life worse and I will not make choices that will mean falling back into that nasty dirty hole. I’ve worked too hard to plunge back into the bottle and give up all the freedom and joy I’ve gained.
I’ll choose to help a friend, lend a hoof and stay clean on top of my hole. I’ve been told that it’s a lot easier to stay sober than it is to get sober. I’m not willing to have to get sober again. I’m determined to stay sober now. Getting sober was one of the hardest things I ever had to do, but it is the most gratifying and liberating thing I’ve ever done. Now I get my high from living. How about you?
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