A friend, the other night, came up to me as we were bowling (I bowl on a sober league) and asked if I could share my perspective with him, as a person who recovered young. He said that he was sponsoring a young guy who was struggling. Not with the steps, he was putting in the work, but with feeling like he was being cheated because he had to sober up young.
I could relate. I got over that 299 months ago.
I made peace with sobering up young two weeks into recovery because I knew quitting drugs and drinking would stop the pain. I quit digging, in other words.
Once I made the decision to quit, I gave up on the notion that I could ever drink successfully. I had exhausted all other options. I had tried everything I could think of to control my abuse. It was like trying to stop a freight train with a pea shooter. Talk about Don Quixote!
Maybe if I aim just right, and jump to the left as I shoot the conductor in the forehead with my pea shooter, he’ll stop the train…. Yeah! That might work!
As time went on, it became easier to leave that “cheated” feeling in my past. I went from having to quit to wanting to stay quit. And with that, the pain went. As the pain went, let’s just say it was easy to not want the anguish back.
I was watching the lead up to Monday night football last night. They featured a story about the Eagles quarterback and his tie to a young kid who’d died because of cancer. The kid was ten when he passed, and I was in full-blown tears watching the story.
That poor kid would have given anything to be able to get rid of his cancer by going to a few meetings and doing some steps.
Cheated? I cheated death and got an awesome life in the process. I wasn’t cheated by sobering up at 22. I was cheating.
It’s all in the perspective.