Friday, September 30, 2011
The Journey Back: The Awakening
In my last post written earlier today called And So It Begins...I cover my daily morning meditation and wake up routine. I attribute my ability to stay sober through those first 18 months or so to that routine and a couple of activities that I did religiously, almost without fail each day. My motivation? It was easy...I was scared to death that I was going to drink again and I was going to ANY length to avoid doing so.
I was not easy for me at all for my entire world revolved around drinking. The extant of that was news to even me until I tried to quit drinking. Then it began very clear how much focus I placed on drinking and having the ability to access drink virtually at all times.It truly was an insane life driven by uncontrolled and unchecked selfishness on my part.
And that is why it required drastic measures applied with steadfast consistency, over a long period of time to break those habits, routines and ultimately my entire way of living. Most of us think quitting will be a hassle but no big deal...it's because we are in complete denial about how this disease of alcoholism/addiction controls EVERY single aspect of our lives, we are completely clueless about this. When we realize it for the first time the typical reaction among alcoholics who are honest with themselves is...Despair.
Because it truly looks hopeless...and it sure did seem hopeless to me. There were things I felt OK about but deep down I couldn't picture how I could possibly function without the drink or drugs. Or what would I do? Every thing I did in my life contained or revolved around drinking...travel, entertainment, everyday living...everything. I had no idea where or how to even start.
The best thing I had going for me was desperation...the fact that I nearly died at my own hand, that I was hospitalized long term for psychiatric care, that I had no job, no relationships...nothing, all worked to my advantage. First...simply because I had no more excuses...they looked stupid and ridiculous even to me at that point. I had to do something...
This desperation forced me to listen to the suggestions of others because ultimately the help of people who had been there themselves was the most beneficial help at all. It was from people who had been through this that I got the suggestion for daily reading and meditation. To do it EVERYDAY at about the same time and never diminish or stop.
Those folks saved my life...no doubt about it. They are the reason you here me mention serving others as often as I do here on SHELL SHOCK SERENADE. Because I learned from them how critically important it was to the new person in recovery. How did I know? Because I experienced it for myself and there was no doubt what so ever in my mind that this was true...serving others helps you..
So that is the background information on those early days. In the coming days I will try to continue this series on the process and how recovery began to come together in my life. Eventually there were a series of transformations that took place along the way that strengthened my routines, my resolve and ultimately my recovery overall.
I have to laugh because when I posted this morning I had no idea that I might beginning a series of posts on how my recovery came together yet that is exactly what has happened. It is quite useful for me to take this journey back and share it with you right now. So until the next time...
(Painting by Fredrick Remington)