Who Would Have Thought?
My life was a train wreck. It was quickly spiraling out of control. What started out as a party ended up in a hellish life that I would not wish on my worst enemy. I had turned into a scheming, lying, pathetic excuse for a person. Somewhere, I got lost in my life. My final days existed of waking up, getting dressed for work, flying into a major anxiety attack, calling in my absence from work, and drinking and drugging all day to ease the anxiety. Days turned into weeks.
In the end, I couldn’t get drunk enough or even high. I drank, got sick, and immediately poured another drink to chase that relief that I was continually seeking. The end eventually turned into a hospitalization followed by treatment. Who would have thought that the individual living a life of hell would today be looking at four years of sobriety and living a life in recovery? Remembering the past and sharing my story keeps me sober today. Reliving those memories are not pleasant, but it is an important part of my history.
My life today is tremendously different. I still face anxiety and uncertainty in my life, but I use the tools that my 12-step program has given me. I no longer live in fear. I try to live a life of honesty and openness and think before I speak. I am a better son and friend to my inner circle. I cherish the simple things in life like waking up clear-headed, the beauty of nature, and the kindness of others. I learn things about myself every day. I am continually work to develop myself to be the person I knew I could be. I am learning to love myself. I am learning to forgive myself. I am learning to know what happiness feels like. I am beginning to love life.
This may seem like a normal life process to most people. But people in recovery have to learn a whole new process of living. We have to rewrite the script that we gave ourselves in the past. We have to learn new ways of dealing with people, places, and things. We have to believe in the goodness within ourselves. We have to learn to trust and believe in others. We have to learn to open ourselves to others when we are at our most vulnerable. We have to learn a new way of living.
People in recovery will know exactly what I am talking about. It is an amazing, life-changing process that is challenging and baffling at the same time. As I look back on the past four years, I am amazed at my progress. By the grace of God, who would have thought? I am continually inspired by committing myself to a life of sobriety!
For those who still suffer and struggle with addiction issues, I offer you this little advice: Love yourself and forgive yourself. There is a better life out there if you want it. It is probably going to be the most difficult thing that you have ever done, but the payoff is worth it. There is a beautiful way of living out there for you. Just believe in yourself and trust the process!
If you would like to share your story with Heroes in Recovery, you can reach me at Bo@heroesinrecovery.com. Be part of the solution! When you share your story, you help break the stigma associated with substance use and mental health issues. Please comment and share my post, I enjoy hearing from you!