Death was at the door.
Our drug and alcohol abuse was a progressive trip, where the unimaginable became imagined, self-destruction escalated, ultimately becoming an abnormal norm, and acceptance of the unwanted drowned out our deep-rooted wants.
Throughout our preteen years, we never planned or envisioned a life for ourselves that would include a severe dependence on mind-altering substances. Our experimentation led us to binges, leading us to recreational (social) consumption and required (maintenance) intake. The quest for the higher high lasted longer than expected as days blurred into years and regrets manifested into remorse, wrecked relationships, and lost opportunities.
We found ourselves at a crossroads. Would we continue on the path toward death? Would we stay on the street of shattered existence? Was there a third option – a road marked hope?
As the story turned out for us, there was a third option. We believe this choice exists for anyone open and willing to explore its direction.
A new course
The first and vital step in our recovery came with acknowledging that we possessed head-wiring that differed from our human counterparts. Simply put, we were prone to addictive behavior. We could see it clearly in our past, we could feel it in our present, and we feared for it in the future. Accepting this truth set the tone for the healthy lifestyle journey we were about to embark on.
Our new course recognizes that we need to fill a hole found deep inside us.
We had to come to grips with the fact that if we did not purposefully place something in the figurative hollow, then something, anything, would fill it by default. Gambling, pornography, excessive shopping, overeating, overworking, etc., could overtake our lives if we fail in discipline and proactive placement.
Choose love, choose service.
If “whatever” can fill this gap and drive our actions, then why not focus on the healthiest alternatives possible? If we are, by default, destined to obsess, why not choose water over vinegar?
We can choose to choose whatever alternative we desire. We have chosen to choose love. This takes practical shape as we explore the concept of love and how this love plays out in the world surrounding us.
It is nearly impossible to love and to hate at the same time. And love, we believe, starts with the spark that can either be fanned, turning into fire, or snubbed out, becoming merely soggy ash. As we don't want to become a saggy ass, we remain on alert, ensuring that we are fanning that small flame in the hopes it turns into a beautifully controlled blaze.
Fanning requires smiles, opening doors, gentle touches, quick texts, the occasional flower, or the much-appreciated date night. Fanning demands unconditional service.
Love and service are progressive. Experimentation leads to binges that bring joy, experiences that bring fulfillment, and relational depths that are long-lasting and purposeful.
We find ourselves on a healthier path because we choose to do so. If embraced and gently cared for, this road leads us to fields of comfort. Sure, we will encounter rocks on the highway to happiness, but we know that, for today, we will deal with them clearly and concisely and react consciously and positively progressively.
Today, we choose wisely.
Thoughts and ideas for this blog post were taken and built upon from a sober.coffee podcast #128 A Love Story Part 1 - Bruce & Karen..the episode dropped on 9/1/2021 Click here to hear the podcast.
Alcoholics Anonymous and AA are registered trademarks of Alcoholics World Service. Inc. References to AA, the 12 steps, and 12 traditions does not mean that AA has reviewed or approved the contents of this publication nor that AA agrees with the views expressed herein. This publication is intended to support personal growth and should not be considered a substitute for healthcare professionals' advice. The author’s advice and viewpoints are their own.