The easiest way to make it in recovery is simple. It’s just hard as hell.
Choose what is right over what is easy…. or worse yet, what will feel good in the short term but lead to disaster in the long run.
Mrs. Bgddy and the kids are in Indy for Drum Corps International and I am bach’ing it. The easiest thing to do, the thing that only seems like it would feel good, is to sit home alone, ride my bike every morning, and only leave to pick up a meal at whichever restaurant would strike my fancy.
…In fact, while I’m at it, maybe I should let my eyes stray and walk on the wild side a little bit, no? Maybe I should flirt with a pretty girl, that would surely make me feel alive and exhilarated! While I’m at it, I should go to where the pretty girls are…. like a bar. I can just have a cranberry juice and club soda (with a twist of lime – try it, recovering folk, it’s delicious). Yeah….
That’s how we think, we drunks. And that’s how we die by the sword. That’s how we relapse.
I went to a meeting at noon, and while it isn’t my favorite (oh how I love preachy old farts who love to explain how you should do it, rather than what works for them), I can usually get something really good from the meeting and I can give my level-headed attitude and non-cluttered view of the program to it. If nothing else, I can get a laugh while an old crusty is trying to explore what he believes it must be like to be Mick Jagger (or maybe Keith Richards?).
Then I call my friend, James, because I had a few first thoughts creep in that I didn’t like. Those first thoughts never turned into second thoughts (I never entertained the first thought, so it doesn’t count in my world. I look at it as my ex-drunk melon being stupid so I throw that thought in the garbage). We go out to dinner, talk about recovery over a wonderful steak at Black Rock (and a couple of cranberry juice and club sodas). Then we go grocery shopping at a local highfalutin grocery store and head home.
I sleep like a baby, knowing my marriage, my sobriety, and my life is intact. My last thought as I drift off is of how much I miss my wife, of how fun it is to be in love with her.
That’s how I live to love another beautiful day. I do what’s right over what my warped mind thinks will feel good. Every time. The alternative involves a sword. And death.