Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Everyone has a story....

I was born with a sixth finger, a pinkie that was removed about 24 hours after I was alive. Not a big deal by medical standards, but by being born with an extra digit, I came out strange and screaming with a story from the get go.

Many decades later, I still have a story and I'm still slightly different (I don't think it has anything to do with the removed appendage) but the difference is that now I have a voice to tell the tales I live.

This week, I celebrate my seventh year of sobriety and again, I look back on my "story" to gain insight and perspective on my own life and how it relates to the overall ways of the world.

My story leading to recovery is universal. I drank, I walked down a tumultuous path in life and I hit my own proverbial bottom. Nothing hugely earth shattering, but I was starting to run down the path of serious self destruction instead of walking and I got smart, I stopped for a moment to look at where I was headed. I changed direction and used everything in my power and resource bank to ensure that the direction I was heading would lead me to the most advantageous place in life.

Seven years later, my story is now grounded in recovery instead of addiction. I have been able to take the voice I was born with (again, reference the "came out screaming") and use it both to help others and learn from the world around me. I am not an expert in recovery, but rather, an individual who has decided to share my life with anyone willing to change their own direction.

After seven years, the struggle to be sober remains as critical as ever. I fight my urges and insecurities on a daily basis. I strive to collectively take everything I am learning and win the battle against my detrimental addiction that almost cost me my life on many occasions. In today's economic meltdown, I struggle with how to make sense of what's going on and am trying to do so with those things I have learned in my recovery; Patience, acceptance and faith.

All things considered, patience consists of taking each day as it is. I can not control all the elements around me, but I can remember to be patient with myself, my job, the economy, etc. Every day has become just that, every day. I live in the moment more than ever, I try very very hard not to consume myself with the future because I just don't know what's going to happen. And I accept this inability to predict the future. I accept the things that I cannot control. But, take responsibility and pride in those things that I can.

This is where faith comes in. I have faith that no matter what, I will remain sober. I may end up in a different place on many fronts, but I will always see my sobriety as a constant source of faith that, when things were at the lowest point in my own life, I pulled myself up and recovered. And, universally, we will do the same when the time is right. The principals of recovery can be carried over into so many more elements of life than just addiction. It means having faith in oneself, having faith in the ability to persevere and believing that what one is doing is honest and true.

So, seven years later I no longer find myself focusing so much on how I got here. That was the easy part. I do focus on why I have chosen to live my life sober, reasons that are far more fulfilling than why I chose to live my life drunk. I have chosen to live each day as a gift. I am alive, I am able to interact with thousands of people who are living a similar life and I have been given a gift to be able to speak freely and candidly about my journey.

Thank you all very much for being here. You've made the journey very real and true.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your anniversary. I hope your life continues to get better and that your voice continues to grow, reaching more and more people.

Dave said...

Congratulations on your seven years. I often am my most reflective about where I have been and how far I have come during the day of my anniversary.

It truly is a wonder that I survived and am able to have the life I have today. In reading your blog I get the sense you have a similar perspective.

Enjoy and celebrate having escaped that special hell, and to have traded in a life of dying for a life of real living.

Marci said...

Congratulations! I too am celebrating my birthday, 8 years. I absolutly agree with all that you wrote. Everyday is a gift. How we choose to spend it, is what matters. I'm truly blessed to spend my days soberly, no matter what life is doing around me. By living sober, I am always available, not only to myself, but to those in my beautiful life. Happy Birthday! Marci

shinyruby2 said...

happy birthday : ) it's so great to read your postings. x

Dave said...

Congrats Kim !!! And here's to 70 more sober years!!!

Fountainhead said...

Thank you for you. I still feel very new to my life of sobriety and I read your blogs as regularly as I do the big book for inspiration and support ... all the way over here in New Zealand.

Anonymous said...

I want to congradulate you and thank you. I am not someone in recovery but my mom was. Reading you posts has helped me understand what she and so many others out there are going through. It has truely helped me in dealing with her addictions.

Thank you again and congratulations on your 7 years/

Kim said...

Congrats! Your blog and especially today's post have helped me tremendously. In a few weeks, I'll be celebrating 2 years. I'm struggling a bit but using all the AA tools at my disposal to remain sober and rise above my own bull. Congrats again!

SoberJourneyNow said...

Great story. I was encouraged to write about my own story after reading some of your posts. I have journaled my first 60 days. Thank you so much!!


http://soberjourneynow.blogspot.com

Mias said...

Sobriety is glorious! I am 19 years now and life started for me when I stopped drinking. Love your beautiful twelvestepping. it is what this world needs. Keep on walking the walk you walk.
Love Mias

Anonymous said...

I just wanted you to know that your posts have helped me a lot in the past year. I've been sober 18 months now, and today my life is 1,000 times better than before. I go to regular AA meetings and read all the literature I can, including all your posts. Something about your stories really resonates with me. Thank you and here's to your continued sobriety!

Eli said...

I especially paid attention to your paragraph about faith. I've struggled lately to hold on to the faith that I will choose to do the right things each day. But I also can't go down the road of trying to predict the future. It inspires me to work for the sense of accomplishment that you feel having maintained your sobriety for seven years. Congratulations!

Ric said...

Congrats Sobriety Girl! Amazing how great life is without what I couldn't do without. Thanks for the reminder.