06 May 2018

ADDICTION: Crawling with a Crutch

Damn, damn, damn, damn.
Denial disallows the seeing of its own insanity. What addiction is. 
Social structures, folkways and mores allow and encourage many behaviors. Drinking is embedded in our culture. Happy Hours have a certain social sanction. A drink will cure what ails you and so is allowed. Big humps in the road become little bumps, we are taught, if and when a drink somehow jumps in to lighten the load.
But damn. That little crutch I used too much became bigger than the load it was supposed to lighten. Alcohol became the little crutch that grew until it was all I knew and then, there I was, crawling with a crutch that no longer did as it was deemed to do and I could and would no longer heal. Unreal. Un-feel.
Crawling with a crutch. Crawling with a crutch.
Perhaps I've already said too much.
An unknown bartender, if I weren't in one of my familiar haunts, might ask "Do you want a chaser for your scotch?" "No, thanks," I'd almost chuckle back. You see, beer was what I drank in the shower through my sippy cup (with lid) to sober up in the morning after too many scotches the night before.
As sad as that might sound, I'd find my way to work, often late, and in a few more hours doing my penance (called a job, the punishment whose reward was drink), a few more scotches found would chase all of my sadnesses away. If not those first few, then the many more to follow, to be sure.
Do I want a chaser? I was both the chaser and the chased until alcohol erased all such subtle distinctions. 
Me walking into a barroom was crawling with a crutch. 
From the time I woke up, until I brought that first drink of the day to my lips, I was filled with anxiety. A drink would fix that in the most jury-rigged sort of way. 
"So much of my perceived pleasure in drinking, smoking and doing other addictive substances was the anxiety preceding picking up and the relief of getting my fix. Give me my drug and my anxiety and stress were reduced. I called this 'pleasure.' This must be pleasure, mustn't it? Unknowingly living to satisfy my level of addiction. Is this how and why and what I lived for?...."
No scotch. No chaser. Recovery is the only road for me. I thirst for life, not what took that thirst away. Drinking, addiction, crawling with a crutch, has no purpose for me. It never did, when truth be told, after 50,000 drinks were bought and sold. My greatest pleasure is the absence of the crutch with which I crawled.
This new life, sane and sober, is a good fit for me. Responsible and free. Crawling with a crutch no more.

"Nothing matters more than that we remain sober because when we remain sober everything matters more."
#Alcoholism #Addiction #Recovery
The passage in quotes is excerpted from ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction and Reconstruction of An Alcoholic Animal: http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Recovery Tweets: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4
140+ Recovery Posts: https://goo.gl/fmzt9b

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