When I started in AA almost 9 years ago, I was initially pretty overwhelmed by the stories — the “drunkalogues” — of the men and women who really reached bottom before beginning their long road of recovery. And I’m ready to admit, I never got arrested, got in a bar fight, slept under a bridge, lost a home or a marriage… never did any of people present in gritty, awesome detail at meetings or in the smoke room.
So anyway, one thing I have realized over the years is that even though not everyone has that sort of “drunkalogue” that so many folks thrive on, it’s important to note that everyone in need of recovery does, in fact, go through their own hell. I think that’s where the word “perspective” gained so much traction within AA.
All that to give you this: I read an amazing lead today from a lady who is living through some things of which I simply have precious little perspective at all.
Then we decided to start a family. I got pregnant quickly, but soon after I shared the happy news, things went wonky…and sadly miscarried. I got drunk because there was no reason to be sober for 9+ months. That pattern continued. I transitioned from being a “social alcoholic” to an “infertility alcoholic”. I was willing to do anything to get and stay pregnant. I met a homeopathic doctor that suggested I was “sensitive” to alcohol and that if I wanted to carry a child, I would need to give up booze, (and wheat, milk, corn, sugar, tomatoes…. ) I was sober for many months (didn’t really count), lost weight, felt better, but my mission was to become a mother. I wasn’t focused on how fabulous I was alcohol-free. A feeling I do remember is being slightly annoyed that my husband just kept on drinking when we were together alone… even when I was not.
Yes, I know. These are the kind of things that don’t show up in the AA materials on the rack in the large meeting room. Best you read this right here than on the wall of the ladies’ room, though. Or the men’s room. Because this actually works both ways.
This entire amazing post by merry b. sober really deserves to be read in its entirety. Not because it’s a cool sobriety tale. It’s not. What it is, is the blunt reality that sobriety comes too often at a major cost. We just rarely know that before we step onto the recovery path.