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The Single most Important Reason I Chose Recovery from my Alcoholism (and Pot Addiction)

A drug is a drug. It doesn’t matter what you use, it’s why you use that’s important.

I ran myself out of options before I made the decision to give full abstinence a try. I tried every combination I could think of. Beer only, weed only, beer and weed only, liquor only, weed only, liquor and weed only, beer and liquor only, beer and liquor and weed (a personal favorite), wine coolers (they’re great if you want a great buzz and an enormous stomach ache, all at the same time! Woohoo!)… I tried everything, but I couldn’t control my use for more than a few days, maybe even a couple of weeks if I found myself in enough trouble (I managed two weeks of control one time – then the wheels fell off).

After one too many run-ins with the police, the State of Michigan (the whole entire State) decided it might be a good idea if I tried to quit. I mean the whole State, too; it said on all of the paper work, “People of the State of Michigan vs. James L… A judge sent me to treatment.

The day I walked in the door, I fully planned on getting drunk the day I got out. I was going to do my time and I was getting out and I was getting lit once I did.

Then the DT’s started after a Category 5 hangover. I shook so bad I couldn’t drink out of a glass. I needed a straw. The nausea, the sweats… combine that with a general disgust for what I’d become and I was pretty low. I could have looked up and seen a snakes ass passing over me, folks. I mean low.

And that’s when I asked God for a deal. A bargain, if you will.

That night, lying in bed, I prayed and asked God if He’d just help me, I’d give recovery, and thereby abstinence, everything I had. When I woke up I felt as if a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. For the first time since I’d picked up my first beer, I didn’t feel a compulsion to get lit. Friends, it was like stepping out of the dark into the light.

I was never as low as I’d been that night, since. No more snakes asses for me. The DT’s faded and eventually I got on with my life and really made something of myself. My life hasn’t been a perfect Hallmark card, but it’s pretty close, considering what I came from.

So taking my 26 years of continuous sobriety back to that night I made my bargain with God, there was one thing I really hoped for out of the deal.

I wanted to be happy.