When people ask, “Why don’t you just stop?” they might as well ask, “Why don’t you just stop converting oxygen into carbon dioxide?”

Common sense didn’t work on me. And because it didn’t, all attempts at handling my drinking were done in secret, where they could fail in quiet seclusion.

Step One:
We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.

There was no quitting, stopping, or controlling. But – and this is the miracle part – there was, oddly enough, surrendering, giving up, and crying “uncle”.

My bottom came and went (and maybe someday I’ll tell that story). Suffice it to say that I went off the rails of the crazy train, and this time there were witnesses. Nothing involving the law, just loved ones. On Christmas. Morning. Look, I wasn’t about to turn myself in, admit failure, hands up, time for me to get some help. I needed to leave myself no alternative.

Two days later, the Steps began. Sure, there was hand-wringing shame and head-down embarrassment. But there was another feeling, one that felt like a giant splinter had been removed from my head, one I don’t think I ever experienced sober. Relief.

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