“Hey there! Come on in, have a seat. Glad to see ya! Can I get ya anything? No? Alrighty then. I’m a recovering alcoholic, and we sure do like our coffee. Do ya mind if I get some? It should be about done. Thank Ya. I’ll be right back. Make yourself at home. Oh, and don’t mind the cats. Only one of them might bite ya.”
You look around the living room of my luxurious 1220sq ft home, (uh..wonder which one might bite) nestled in the big town of Lafayette, TN. There are some prints on the blue..and man I mean…blue blue walls. The Old Guitarist by Picasso hanging by the computer monitor, which is giving a slight glow to the room. Got Van Gogh – The Starry Night hanging above the couch there behind you. Nice comfy home. A little messy, but I am an alcoholic, not as messy as one might thing. You can tell that I’m working on things around here. Cabinets are getting painted, walls getting painted. Getting things back in order.
“So, How are ya? Think about that one, maybe I’ll give you a chance to answer that one later. What can I do for you?”
“Aww shucks, you ain’t interested in hearing about my road to recovery, surely.”
“Oh, that’s why your here. Cause the sign above the door said “My Road to Recovery”. Well, I guess that kinda makes sense that that’s why you would be here.”
“Tell ya what. I’ll share it with you. Promise me one thing though, If I’m gonna spill it and it gets boring, please don’t up and leave, awright? It’s kinda long, so I’ll just go ahead and apologize, but you did ask for it you know.”
“Let’s see..where to start?”
“Well, I’m not gonna go into all the drinking stuff that I used to do. I might tell you some of that later. I’m gonna start back…oh…sometime around September of 2007……..
I was tired of the feelings that I had every morning when I got up. Having to put the red eye in, making sure I even had the red eye relief. Then going about my “normal” life. But this day I was going to be different, for a while.
I didn’t drink anymore. I took it upon myself to just stop. I broke down, broke my friends and families hearts, and told them about my problem and how I could do it on my own, even though most of them thought otherwise, but hey, I’m an alcoholic and I’m always in control, right?
Well I did stop drinking, for a while. I went through the night sweats. Man, those were the coldest sweats I’ve ever had. You know how it feels when your sleeping at night, and your fever breaks, how you wake up in that little puddle of sweat colder than a cucumber in December? Well, it wasn’t a puddle that I was laying it. I had to flip my mattress up when I left for work so that it could dry out before I got home. It was just horrible.
I got the shakes. Thought one night I was gonna shake my brain loose. Didn’t hardly sleep a wink for about a week or two. But I did it, for a while. Work was horrible. I couldn’t keep from shaking, I tried to hide it, but I’m guessing everyone saw it. Mind was going about 150 gazillion miles an hour.
Fast forward, oh, I’d say to November. I, well the alcoholic voice in my head, had decided that I finally had a hold on my drinking. It wouldn’t hurt me to have a drink or two one Friday night. Guess you can see where I’m going with this huh? Well, I did drink a couple. A couple of 12 packs. In one night!!! Just like I hadn’t stopped a bit. Took up right where I left off.
Didn’t go looking for no help. I was gonna just drink for a while then do it all over again. Just hide it from everyone and pretend everything was ok. I done did it once, right?
Now, I didn’t have “it” as bad as some of em out there might tell ya they had it. See, I was a…uh..a what they call, a functioning alcoholic still. I was holding down my job, caring for my children, able to still live a not so abundant life, but just barely. Didn’t drink any during the day, well, weekday. I don’t think I would be saying that today had I not done something..but anywho.
Well, come February, I was still drinking like a fish. But, all the drinking was catching up to me. I was getting really really tired of that voice in my head every waking moment, constantly lamenting about needing alcohol, wanting alcohol, counting alcohol, smelling alcohol, breathing alcohol. I could tell things were just about to hit the fan. I could see me loosing my job, friends. Shoot even my life.
So, I got up one day in September, just on the verge of loosing it all and I cried. No, not like boo hoo, I mean I cried like a little baby. Shoot, I might just break down and cry on ya right here..I’ll try not to though. I remember it vividly, I prayed to God whom I had abandoned a long time ago. I prayed so hard for him to make it stop. In my mind I was saying, Make the voice GO AWAY GOD! MAKE IT STOP!!!!! And then I screamed. I screamed so loud. I told that voice to “SHUT THE HELL UP!!!! I CAN”T TAKE IT NO MORE!!!!!” (sorry mom)
Oh…Sorry about the screaming there. Got lost on the road. Man it was tough. Don’t much like going back there. But that’s the worst of it.
I had had enough. That was February um, I think it was the 22 or 23rd, don’t quite remember the date, might of been earlier. I was a bit messed up, sorry. Daddy called and we met here at home quite a bit was said that day, but if ya don’t mind, I’d kinda like to keep that to myself. Anyway, eventually I said…er..cried that I need help. We cried together. I hadn’t seen my daddy cry since he had those kidney stones (wuss..jk dad). Anyway, He worked with a lady whose husband was a recovering alcoholic and arranged for me to meet him.
He was like an angel…well, a scruffy angel, but still. He was my way out and I could tell it. (I need to call him) He was happy to be alive. He wanted to help me. Told me he went to Cumberland Heights in Nashville, TN. Sobered up and was living the good life.
We talked a little about AA, and the 12 steps. Again, some of that I’ll keep to myself if you don’t mind.
Well, fast forward again. The day is now February 24th. Tomorrow I check my self in for rehab. Nervous as a cat with his tail under a rockin chair nervous. So, what do you do? Have one more go at it. Yep. I drank, and drank, and drank. I had already taken off work that week, told them I was going for help. They were glad, very glad I would say.
Anyway, went to bed..no..passed out that night, woke up the next morning, got in my vehicle and headed to Nashville. That was the last time I even touched the stuff. When I got to Cumberland Heights to check in, I still blew something in the Breathalyzer test. Whew. I cried when I got there to. I was by myself, in a strange place, around a bunch of drunks, and was gonna be hanging out with them for 2 weeks. Kinda looked a bit like a funny farm on the outside. Turns out, there’s miracles that happen there. I called daddy for the last time. I cried..gosh I’m such a cry baby.
Anyway, I think the journey through Cumberland Heights I’ve got in a story lying around here somewhere. If you look around here you might find it. Probably got some questions about that place too I suppose.
When I left Cumberland Heights, I was out of smokes. Also, I had heard of the bar down the street that would give you a free beer if you turned in your chip to em when you got out. I had to drive by it. Again, I was scared. I couldn’t do it. There’s no way. Well, turns out there is a way. I made it past the bar. Then I had to go inside a store and get some smokes. Walked right by the beer and I ain’t gonna say that I didn’t think nothing about it. I kinda did. But I was stronger. I had God back with me.
Got back home, met up with “the guy” again and went to my first AA meeting that night, and I went every night until May I think.
I had gotten back in church and from that point on I found my AA there. There’s even other alcoholics there that I can talk to if I ever need. I tell you what. That bunch of people over there, I love every single one of them. Ain’t no way I can go back now. I’m Alive..ALIVE I tell ya.
Even after all of that. If I could go back and change one thing, ain’t no way I’d change any of that. But, I’ve got that in a book around here somewhere to.
Well, that’s my story up until this day. Things are getting better everyday. Still got a taste in my mouth that I can’t shake. Not like alcohol, but like a craving for alcohol. I’ve gotten used to it though so it don’t bother me too much. Gum usually takes care of it.
I sure hope it was worth you coming all the way out here for that story. If you got any questions, please, feel free to ask. I love talking about it. Makes me feel better. Makes me feel better to have you listening to me too. I appreciate that. Hey, if you know someone whose like I was, why don’t ya send em over? Let me show them how life can be if they want it.
So, How are you doing?”
Filed under: Assisting Other Alcoholics | Tagged: Alcoholic, Beer, My Road to Recovery, Recovery, Rehab | 11 Comments »