If you are not grateful for the fact that you are free, you should be
If you are not grateful that you have not killed anyone, you should be
If you are not grateful that you have family, friends, and loved ones, you should be
If you are not grateful that you did not drink today, YOU SHOULD BE
There is no greater witness about what can go really wrong when we take that drink, than hearing someone on the INSIDE telling us how he went from mild mannered child to an alcoholic.
Accused, Sentenced, and Serving time for MURDER …
And in the midst of being incarcerated, our writer has found Inspiration, He has found his God, and has moments of Grace, all within the walls of PRISON.
I think we all have stories about what we used to be like when we drank. I heard a number of them tonight, including my own.
I may not agree with MANY of the things I heard come out of my parent’s mouths, but certain one liners, remain in my minds eye, even today.
My father used to say that: Once you speak words, you can never take them back.
Sadly, he did not listen to his own advice.
My mother used to tell me, in fact, I think she only said it once to me that: If you drink, you better never get caught, because if you do, we won’t bail you out.
Impressively, those words stuck in my brain, a very long time ago. I may have been stopped, once or twice, but I never ended up in jail.
Thank the Baby Jesus …
All it takes is that First Drink. For us, that is all. And we are off to the races. For most of my friends, in the program today, had we all kept drinking, like we did, we’d be fucked, literally.
A man I respect a great deal, just turned 67 the other day, and he has been in a really weird place as of late, he was a man with one goal in life, to use, drink, and cause trouble. And at one time, found himself INSIDE, looking OUTSIDE.
Today, he is on the OUTSIDE, looking inside. A good number of my long, sober, double digit friends, are all in separate spaces, themselves, even while they sit in the same room together, for a meeting.
A number of my OLDER sober friends, in their late 60’s and early seventies are trying to figure out why they are still here, where they are going, and how they are supposed to get there.
I was God Damned lucky this time around. I was lucky to meet the men I met, at Five O’Clock Shadows, when I first came in. Those men, my sponsor, his friends, and a handful of others, were all hard timers, who had made it back out, in one piece.
They had been on the INSIDE. And it was their jobs, to bring us newbies, INSIDE to talk about living sober on the OUTSIDE, to inmates, who were locked up for double digit sentences.
You have not lived sober, until you carry the message into the H.N.I’s …
Hospitals and Institutions.
If you need a reminder of why we stay sober, you need not look any farther, then those who paid the price for their stupidity, arrogance or just plain alcoholism.
At the end of our story tonight, our writer quotes things he heard early on, by people who were on the outside, coming in and out.
All those Warnings about WHAT you SHOULD NOT DO, in the first year …
We all know what those things are. We’ve seen them in action. We know what people do, before they end up walking out the door and drinking and using again.
Safe Haven is a double whammy of just how bad things can go, if you drink, and drive.
Or things that can happen, if you mix alcohol and stupidity.
Or the things that can happen if you say to yourself, “AH, I might not be an alcoholic, even if I don’t remember what I did last night, after drinking heavily …”
Act One: Normal – Human Being
Act Two: Introduce Alcohol
Act Three: Consequences
Act Four: Institutions, Jail or Death
There is a saying that alcoholics either get sobered up, locked up or covered up.
Since I was not genuinely willing to do what it took to get sobered up, I had the other options to face. I never dreamed it would happen so quickly.
If you are sober today, and you did not take a drink, you are FUCKING LUCKY.
Because, really, you could be like some of my friends, who pissed away years of time, due to their arrogance and ineptitude and inability to reach out for help, because they believed they had a handle on the black hole they were sinking into…
They drank and used again.
Thank the Baby Jesus, I am sober.