“A searching and fearless look at our complete drinking record shows that in the last years and months our drinking never created those perfect, magic moments again, no matter how often we tried for them. Instead, over and over, we wound up drinking more than that, and landed in some kind of trouble as a result. Maybe it was simply inner discontent, a sneaky feeling that we were drinking too much, but sometimes it was marital squabbles, job problems, serious illness or accidents, or legal or financial worries.
“Therefore, when the suggestion of ‘a drink’ comes to us, we now try to remember the whole train of consequences of starting with just ‘a drink’. We think the drink all the way through, down to our last miserable drunk and hangover.” p. 51 AA Living Sober
something we hear routinely in meetings is ‘playing the tape all the way through’, or remembering what it was really like…too many people that choose to go back to the drink and drug only recall the good times, or how good it felt to get relief from the first beer, joint, or line of coke…how easily we forget what drove us to the rooms in the first place…we have a selective memory when it comes to our disease…it’s the cunning, baffling nature of the illness…in the face of calamity and self-destruction, we do an about-face and pick up right where we left off…the disease of alcoholism and drug addiction is a chronic and progressive one…we get worse and never better…once an alcoholic/addict always a addict/alcoholic
i know for me, when thoughts of drinking or getting high enter my head, i start to think about those last couple of months before coming to the program…how i used to hide my use…drinking and driving to get away with it…the lying to cover up my use…the fear that gripped me when cops would follow me…the terror i experienced when i came to the next morning to find the house empty…did my wife finally have enough and leave?…what did i say or do this time?…i couldn’t rightly remember
something else that occurs to me when that ‘stinking thinking’ enters my head is what life would really be like if i picked up again…for starters, i would no longer be able to maintain this page…i couldn’t rightly blog about sobriety anymore if i were using…what about all the readers i would let down?…then there are the friends i have in the program…the guys i talk to on a daily-weekly basis…i wouldn’t be able to hang out with them anymore…my whole life would change…my wife and i would instantly have a new relationship…it would ruin and alter everything my life has become over the past 3 and half years
there are so many good reasons for me to stay sober today…i have oppurtunities to be a good father, employee, husband and friend…these relationships were not only difficult before getting clean, but cumbersome as well…i get to live in a beautiful home today and have open and honest partnerships with wonderful people…i get to have responsiblities, like raising children, keeping an orderly home and filling roles in business and school…before, when i was drunk and high, i could barely stay conscious to watch a movie, play a video game, or read a book…most times i passed out, wondering what i had just seen or heard the night before…i missed out on so much…today i have the capacity and ability to be present in the world…this is the fundamental fact i consider when faced with the proposition of picking up again…is it really worth it to throw this life away?…i don’t think so…not to mention the horrible feelings of failure i would experience after coming to and realizing i had thrown all that clean time away…it is so hard to come back from that