I’ve come a long way since the days I was scrounging around for enough change to get drunk for the night. I’ve come a long way since almost going out Jimi Hendrix style. Since picking out which pillar I’d crash my car into. Since running out of options.
You couldn’t say I’ve done recovery perfectly, but I don’t think anyone would be so arrogant as to say, “Yeah! Nailed it!” Those are the people who usually end up drunk a few weeks later and in a ditch a few months after that, wondering what just happened.
As a thought experiment, I like to contemplate what it would be like if I did die tomorrow. Heck, today. Would I be ready to meet my maker? Would I have resentments that I didn’t properly take care of? Or would I lay there, as the light faded and think, “You know what, I’m okay. I did well with the gift of my sobriety. I lived a happy, fun, free life and I did my best to pass on what I was so freely given, to make a difference in other addicts’ and alcoholics’ lives… let’s see what’s next.”
And it’s with that last thought that I try to live my life. I do a fair job of cocking it up from time to time, but I keep giving it my best, hoping I’ll earn a place on the right side of the Pearly Gates.
Now, here’s how I use that thought experiment for good: I like to try looking at my life from the perspective of a spectator. How am I handling the relationships in my life? How do I interact with my wife and kids, with family, with my neighbors, the men I sponsor, with friends (blog and in person) and acquaintances? Am I doing my part to attract rather than promote? Am I that sad fella standing on a hill with his trumpet, hoping someone notices how awesome I am? Am I living the best life I can?
There’s always room for improvement, but I like how I’m doing so far – and I’ll keep working at that room for improvement. One day at a time.
Recover hard, my friends. There are no “do overs”… only “cleanup on aisle seven”.