As my children sing Christmas songs (per request by a precocious 5 year old) in the kitchen while I make dinner, I must reflect on the wondrous harmony of my life right now. I am honestly one of luckiest girls alive. To be alive! In itself a miracle. For an alcoholic with a past like my own. Today I can appreciate the blessing of life, my gratitude for this moment, a moment perhaps not possible without my sobriety. I will never take for granted again the magic of moments. Alright, I’m human and may actually forget what it was like before. What life was before sobriety. Excruciating, intolerable, a path to trudge, a cross to bear…miserable. Not all the time. But when your days consist of counting down the hours until you can take a drink, you are not living. I was dying. And today, at this moment…I’m truly living. And for that I am grateful. The exact amount of my gratitude can’t be measured. But if it could, it would span the universe. There is no turning back now. I have a knowledge, a wisdom, in the pit of my being, my soul says, “you are free.” Free of addiction. Some will argue we will always “be” in recovery, “be” alcoholic. Yes that is true. Yet it is also true that I am free. I am no longer slave to my disease, to my own personal hell. Self-made, or genetically predisposed, whatever. It’s not relevant. I am alive and I am grateful. In a way someone who hasn’t struggled with addiction, been ruined by alcohol, and chose recovery above death can NEVER know. This is when I think, “Thank you, Universe, for giving me alcoholism.” I realize that’s insane. It is. But I am an alcoholic. I am thankful for what I am. I feel so much of what I’ve come to appreciate, to honor, to love and cherish, has only been made known to me through recovery. I read a blog, at http://momastery.com/blog/ and she says that addicts are God’s chosen people. In a sense, because who else can savor life’s essence? Who else can express a gratitude for grace like a junkie who got clean or, me, an alcoholic who is living a sober existence? And if that sounds self-righteous and arrogant I don’t care. It’s not. It’s real. Because only I know what I’ve overcome. And you alone know the battles you may fight and win daily. But I can tell you that overcoming addiction is right up there with all the rest of “The Hardest Thing You Will Ever Do” in life. Today I knell, astounded at my own power, a victory that brought light back into my eyes. It’s the hard-won battle that reaps the richest reward. I will fight more some days than others, but now I am relishing this treasure, my sweet precious life.