First off, let me begin by thanking all those who wished me well and gave me hugs, advice and, most importantly, understanding.  Because slipping makes even less sense to the normals than the alcoholism does.

Not that any of this makes sense to me.  Actually, it does make sense, until I try explaining it.

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

I need to come at this from another angle, and this is what I’m thinking:  Nobody and nothing made me an alcoholic.  As long as I’m looking to blame, even though it might be for the noble purpose of naming, claiming, and letting go, it sets up a false belief that yes, others are to blame, but all I need to do is work the program and forgive myself and everyone else.  Then I’ll be right-sized and able to handle all the horrible things that people, places and things throw at me.  All of the terrible will simply slide off my back.  In this mind state, my alcoholism was simply a reaction to the outside world.  And I’ll stay sober, as long as I don’t let things bother me.

Which couldn’t be further from the truth.  It’s a chemical disease that plays around with my thoughts, feelings and perceptions.  It’s serotonin, dopamine, and opioid peptides, even more so than childhood bullies and adult failings.  It takes my natural emotions, and instead of assuring me that they’re completely normal things to be feeling, goes looking for something out of my control to point at.  Something I cannot change and cannot accept.  And with that, my alcoholism is good to go.  I’m angry and hopeless, depressed and resentful.  Who’s left to blame but those still around me?

But I’m the one that’s powerless over alcohol.  And I’m the one whose life has become unmanageable.  At one point in my life, it actually made sense to drink alcohol to hide my alcoholism.  That’s not what happened five days ago, however.  Five days ago I just wanted to get through a couple of hours.  Of what, I literally and honestly no longer know.  But I do know that I recognized the signs, and chose to do nothing in the moment.

Today:  Another meeting.  Keep coming back.

4 thoughts on “back from zero.

  1. Good stuff, Paul. I sometimes feel that things are unmanageable for me. I have to keep doing what has worked in the past, but my ego sometimes stops me. Like me lately, I haven’t been doing the things that have worked. So things are unmanageable. I will get there again, and seeing you do it has been a good thing for me too. You have helped me.


  2. Pingback: repost: back from zero | club east: indianapolis

  3. Fight the good fight, Paul, and it’s good to know you really understand the battle joined. This was likely the most important post you could have written today.It’s a kick in the butt to be able to repost it because there are a goodly number of folks down here at Club East to need to — and will — read it.

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