Trying to Drink Like Other People

I spent years trying to drink normally. After a few days or weeks of staying dry, I’d convince myself, yet again, that I could have a few drinks and stop, just like other people could.

After I went to A. A. the first time, and admitted that I was an alcoholic, I stayed sober for six months. I remember how casually I reached for the glass of wine that was set in front of me. This time it would be different, I thought. Of course it wasn’t. I didn’t get drunk that night and was real proud of myself. That first drink, however, started many more years of getting drunk and waking up after a blackout.

This morning I was reading the Big Book of A. A. It explains everything that I had tried to do. “The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.”

Something has happened that has taken the obsession from me. I am completely convinced that if I ever have the “first drink” again, I will die a miserable alcoholic death. I’ve seen some of my friends die that way.

The last ten months have not been easy. I’ve had to learn how to “feel pain” and accept the hardships of life without the few seconds of relief that come from the first can of beer. I’m grateful that God helps me remember the pain which follows the momentary relief.

Sandy W. G.

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