Sometimes I wonder about where I’ve been and what I have overcome. I’ve put myself through the wringer a lot. Heck, I’m still putting myself through the wringer, but not with the same things I did in the past.
Most of my life could aptly be described as blissful ignorance. Only in the past few years did I truly turn inward to understand myself and therefore the world I live in. I spent the required amount of time studying my actions, but nothing more. I would self correct when I made small mistakes, but the results of my big mistakes lingered.
In the last few months, I’ve gained clarity of mind that I never knew existed. Had I known what I was missing, I would have traveled this way sooner. If I weren’t stuck in the fog of my own creation, I would have seen the way.
Sobriety Isn’t Half Bad
I don’t regret drinking. I only regret that I wasn’t able to tame the beast within.
When I drank, I would drink until drunk, or it wasn’t worth doing it. I was a weekend warrior that would polish off all available alcohol. If my wife had some extra drinks lying around, those were gone in the morning. She would have to tell me explicitly to leave her drinks alone if she wanted to keep them.
More often than not, I would end up with a massive hangover on Saturday morning. I would overeat all Saturday to recover from the damage I had done to my body. Nothing says, “You’ve got this.” like stuffing food in your mouth all day with a splitting headache. It was a vicious cycle.
Oh, I would sleep. I would sleep all day to recover. Wow, what a waste of a day that was. It has been almost a year since I drank like that, ahh memories. 🍻
In the few months before I finally quit cold turkey, I would get drunk, but I wouldn’t give myself a massive hangover. The only thing stopping me from doing that was the pain in my hands and feet from gout. Drinking a single glass of beer makes my hands and feet burn. It’s my body telling me to fuck right off, and I finally listened. I’m quite the stubborn mule.
With all that behind me, I’ve found a better world of clarity and peace. I’m regularly meditating, exercising, and am forming better habits to replace the destructive ones. I’m making headway now that I won’t allow alcohol to hold me back. I hope that someday I can return to have a drink, but I will not imbibe as long as my hands and feet still burn. If that’s for the rest of my life, then so be it.
As I see success and happiness in my newly sober life, I reflect. I wonder what things would be like if I had never let alcohol take hold. Would I be better off had I not struggled in the first place? I don’t think I would be. It’s the struggle that makes me who I am. It is what makes me know I am strong. If I can beat alcoholism, I can beat anything, and I will.
Most of all, I wonder. I wonder how far I have gone and how far I will go. My hopes and dreams are around the corner, and so is an adventure waiting to happen. My heart fills up with joy when I reflect on that truth. I’m a lucky person with everything to live for every day.
My experiences have made me feel I can do anything. I don’t feel limited in what I can do. Inside my heart, I know I can do whatever it is I would like to do. In that, I find peace, in that I find my voice and my heart singing.