Leaving the house in a huff isn’t the way I wanted to start my Sunday morning. My alcoholism is an early riser, too.

Step Ten: continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

What better way to catch me off guard than first thing in the morning. My defenses are down. I haven’t had coffee. Or a coherent thought. I haven’t hit my knees. I didn’t say my prayers. I mean, come on, it’s Sunday. Can’t I take a time-out from this disease for one day of rest? Let’s take a break for the day, shall we?

No. Unnamed irritations already exist, and are being exacerbated by the messy floor, the constant nudging of dog head against my thigh, and questions requiring thought from my seven-year-old daughter. I was completely out of whack before my morning pee.

So, without getting too inside baseball, this is exactly how I handled this morning up to this very minute. This minute being 8:18 in the morning. I am sitting in an empty library parking lot, relating these events into my phone.

I’m in the car, dog laying down in the back, ice still on my windshield because visibility wasn’t going to stop me from leaving. 8:10 on a Sunday, and already I am running away. I run because I know that to stay would mean to argue and fight and yell and throw and stomp and then run away. Thank God I’ve learned enough to cut out the middleman and just go. Spare everyone else the drama – it’s their Sunday morning, too.

So I go cool out. I get myself a coffee, turn on sports talk radio, and cruise around the empty morning streets with my dog. I think about what set me off; what was already there just waiting to be poked.

Sure, my disease is always there, but it really prefers a catalyst: something to give it a kick-start, and it’s not choosy. It’ll take whatever I’ve got, and most times what I’ve got is pretty petty and pathetic, because most times there’s nothing happening. When it comes to my alcoholism, I’m a beggar and not a chooser.

It’s thinking I had a choice that got me into trouble in the first place.

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