I don’t want to just get by, to survive. I want to thrive in sobriety as I deal with the proverbial life on life’s terms. And thriving sometimes means hanging on with your fingertips to an idea that things won’t always be the way they are right now.
I’ve also been known to talk about this theory I have that many of us in sobriety are often more challenged by the dog gnawing through new sneakers or backing the car over the garbage can than on major life events.
But right now I think that theory sucks. I also think that anyone who says in a meeting, “Honey, you’ll be all right. You’re right where you need to be. Remember, there are no big deals,” needs to be taken out back and whacked over the head with a Big Book.
There ARE big deals and staying sober through gut-wrenching pain may not necessarily be any more difficult than when you find your new Nikes between the dog’s paws, but it’s quite possibly more miraculous.
I believe that a miracle is a shift in perception. But sometimes shifting that perception–particularly when grief and loss is involved–is an overwhelming task that is far bigger than my abilities. Talk about “what an order! I can’t go through with it!”
Wouldn’t it be easier to simply react in the one way that comes naturally to me? Of course it would–returning to my addiction would be a simple, if not cowardly, way of dealing with a boatload of emotional circumstances. I’m told that my disease of addiction is lurking in that dark alley of despair, waiting for me to step in so that it can once again consume me. But one valuable thing I’ve learned in these years of staying sober is that despair eventually passes. Daylight does return to illumine the alley’s darkness so that I can clearly see that it’s not I place where I want to return.
The really cool thing about miracles is they do arrive. I believe they are promises from God. During those times when the darkness can’t possibly get any more pitch black, if I can simply hold on, my miracle will arrive. Every single time it does–and in 19 years a miracle has always appeared at the exact moment it was supposed to, and always in spite of me–I am humbled, amazed and awed by God’s grace.
If you’re having a moment of darkness that seems to stretch into eternity, please wait. I promise you that the miracle you need will arrive.