A Long Time Struggle
Hope and gratitude is what my life is full of today. But, for the longest time I struggled with my addiction. My life had been falling apart for some time, destroying everyone I loved along with myself. I wanted my life back. My mistake was that I thought I could do it on my own. My entire life I was able to accomplish anything I put my mind to.
Dreadful Decisions Continue
For now, let’s just put aside the fact that no, I couldn’t do it alone. Rather, for the purpose of this blog I want to focus on something else. And, that quite frankly is that I lived in the problem. During this period of approximately two years I was not working and was primarily home alone. All the time continuously running through my head all the mistakes I made, as well as continuing these dreadful decisions.
I was ashamed because of a job I lost after almost four years. It was though my entire identity was wrapped up in that position. Nor was I being honest with myself or my now ex-husband about anything that was going on with me. I was disuniting myself from my husband/best friend, my son, family and friends. The whole time beating myself up because I couldn’t figure “this” out. Why the fuck can’t I fix “this”, or anything for that matter? My days were spent situated in that shame, keeping myself in depression, in feelings of worthlessness. Most importantly, I chose to carry on in the role of a victim.
Remained Living In The Problem
It wasn’t because I didn’t want recovery, didn’t want to change, or that I didn’t care about the people I was hurting. Because I categorically did care. But my drinking worsened as I continued to remain living in the problem. “Just one more” is what I would tell myself, and would eventually end up in another black out or hospitalization. During this time attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings more to smooth the waters between my husband and I than to actually seek any help really.
It wasn’t until I lost everything; son, husband, pets, home, family, friends and any possible self worth that I had left. My husband gave me an ultimatum one day, which provided me with two options. The two options I was given were either my bond being revoked for a DUI with sever bodily injury, or going to rehab. I felt like I couldn’t stand, I remember thinking my life was over and I was ready to die. My fears took over and I ran to the bathroom and cried, looking at myself with shame and disgust. Then something inside said “this isn’t you Lissi, you don’t want to die”. I knew what I wanted to do. Yes, wanted to do and not just needed to do. I moved to New Port Richey to enter a structured program for women voluntarily.
A Change Of Fellowship
Through that structured program I began, once again, attending Alcoholics Anonymous. My being part of this fellowship continued for a couple of years. I continued to struggle with the idea of being abnormal, of carrying this label of Alcoholic for the rest of my life. Something just wasn’t clicking inside. I had not fully accepted nor surrendered to a new way of life. At least not until I was introduced to the Narcotics Anonymous. Yes, alcohol is a drug. And this is when my life really started to change for me.
The introduction to NA came through the Da Vinci Home. Again, I experienced a few more relapses because I wasn’t fully committed to this program, or a new way of life. Then one day I met a wonderful woman. She had a way about her, an aura if you will, that was magnetic. She had something I always wanted, a sense of peace and spirituality. A woman who later agreed to be my sponsor. As we began to actually work the steps together, I began having a series of spiritual awakenings. These spiritual awakenings were a first for me. Little by little, just one day at a time I was able to be more open and honest with her and others about myself and my addiction.
Complacency Takes Way
The DUI with severe bodily injury I mentioned earlier came with a sentence I am still serving. A sentence of community control. Recent circumstances of complacency on my part brought on a violation that led to three months in jail. During those three months I was able to work through the realities of my life and of my addiction. This time allowing me to really make peace with those realities. I realized how much I had grown in the couple of months of working with my NA sponsor.
Continued Support In Physical Absence
“I came to believe” as is said in the rooms of NA. To believe that this program works, and my higher power was working with me. Yes, I came to believe this while I was sitting in jail. My complacency procured my time in jail and nothing else. The support of my best friend, my sponsor, my family as well as others was amazing during this time. Never once did I feel alone or forgotten. My higher power reminded me of what I have now, and most importantly my need to live in gratitude.
Hope And Gratitude Actualized
This time allowed the biggest spiritual awakening I have had up to this point in my recovery. I found myself full of hope and gratitude. Constant, while sitting in county jail, was I able to recognize hope and gratitude for so much. I am no longer victimizing myself. There is so much work to be done with the wreckage I’ve left behind. But the difference is today I live in the solution.
Surrender Grants Happiness
I have completely surrendered and granted myself the right to be happy. Today I am provided suggestions through my recovery for which I am completely open minded to. My desire to pick up a drink today is gone. Today there is not a fucking drink out there worth my life. There are too many people in my life today I care about, too much I have worked for, and too much to still look forward to. And today, I don’t want to loose any of it or the opportunities I have yet to conquer. Most importantly is that I know my self worth today and have worked to regain my self esteem.
Hope And Gratitude Grants Opportunities
Today I have hope and gratitude for my presently beautiful life and for the life in my future. And this blessing of hope and gratitude is priceless to me. A life full of gifts, so long as I continue to do the right things. The right things for myself and others. A life where I GET TO become a better person every day. I’m granting myself this opportunity of growth in recovery, and with my higher power I have faith this is obtainable. Today my ever continuing goal is to become a more spiritually fit and beautiful person inside, and to continue to create a beautiful life.
I will leave you with the blessings step two has provided me with. Blessings of intangible attributes I value today in myself, and for my life: aspiration, ambition, goal, plan, design, dream, belief, confidence, achievement, concern, faith, optimism, promise. Yes, they all mean Hope! Grant yourself the opportunity to create yourself too.