"Loving to drink. Living to drink. Dying to drink. Dying from drinking. This is the progression of alcoholism."
The period from my first relapse to my final relapse is best described in this fiery metaphor:
"A man jumps out of a burning building, his clothing consumed in flames. Ripping off his clothes, some of his skin and burning flesh comes off with the shirt he was wearing. The blisters are now just forming, the smoke and stench of burning hair in the air. Paramedics struggle to put him on a stretcher, his arms and legs flailing from the pain of his suffering, his screams drowning out the screams of the sirens. Suddenly, he breaks free from the paramedics and runs back into the burning building, the walls now consumed in flames.
This is the insanity of alcoholism. This is relapse. And this will happen again and again, each time just a little bit differently, each time progressively worse."
Finally, after 8 years in this precarious state of perpetual relapse, I eventually "stuck and stayed" sober. Recovery transpired over time and those initial 8 years were part and parcel of my Recovery process. Now, having accumulated 14 years of continuous sobriety, I can sum up the whole process in these few words (there was a light at the end of the tunnel):
"Loving to drink. Living to drink. Dying to drink. Dying from drinking. This is the progression of alcoholism. Wanting to live. Learning to live. Loving to live. Living with love. This is the progression of recovery."
(I did not know what I did not know, swallowed up by addiction. I had to crawl before I could walk, so for me, relapse was part and parcel of recovery. The progress of my recovery still continues all these many years later. I did not know what I did not know.)
I am an alcoholic in long-term recovery.
Recovery is possible, doable, irreplaceable.
I share because "you have to give it away to keep it." Share it.
Silence is another drink. Another drink is destruction and ridiculously unnecessary. It would achieve nothing.
"Wanting to live. Learning to live. Loving to live. Living with love. This is the progression of recovery."
"Nothing matters more than that we remain sober because when we remain sober everything matters more."
#Alcoholism #Addiction #Recovery
Passages in quotes are excerpted from ALL DRINKING ASIDE: The Destruction, Deconstruction and Reconstruction of an Alcoholic Animal (on Amazon.com) http://amzn.to/1bX6JyO
Recovery Tweets: http://twitter.com/JimAnders4
99+ Recovery Posts: https://goo.gl/fmzt9b