I will have 9 months sober on June 29th. That reminds me of another nine month stretch…pregnancy. The time it takes to grow a human being inside a womb I’ve done twice before. I’ve accomplished two 9 month periods of sobriety and now this will be the 3rd 9 months of living clean and sober. Wow I just realized that number 3 popping up again. Damn it. I will just say the cliche, “Third times a charm” and in this particular case, absolutely. But such a miraculous thing as pregnancy demands a woman’s attention to her health and of course sobriety. It was actually easy to not drink during pregnancy. I didn’t feel like I was missing out. Didn’t feel pressure, agony, stress over avoiding that “first drink” And it was the knowledge of another’s well-being that made it so easy. I cared more for my baby than any desire to drink. And now it is the same, and it is not. I care more about being sober than drinking. Yes. But my desire to be sober is only a beginning. If I examine my desires (insert values) closely, I see that not drinking (insert living clean & sober) is the prerequisite. What happens after deciding to “be a sober person” is the real deal. And I’ve only dipped my toes into it.
I was talking yesterday to my therapist about being sober and how hard it is living life on life’s terms. She talks a lot about values and acceptance. Drunks who feel they are forced into sobriety will resist it to the core. That is excruciating, let me tell you. Drunks have a choice. Just like everybody. We get to choose. I get to decide what road to go down, what path will be most aligned with my value system. Let me tell you what I mean: I love family, my husband, my children but also my relationship with them. I like my work. I’m a counselor to children. I love to read. Books! I love to watch good movies! I think knitting is pretty cool and chill. I have found out that folding laundry is nice. I need to run. Put on my tennies, plug into iphone, and go… None of this list of values can be what it really is in the moment, with alcohol. In me. For others, I don’t know. I only know the truth for me. And that truth doesn’t include alcohol anymore. It’s a beginning.