Do I want what she has?

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2003
Do I want what she has?
5
Sat, 09-11-2004 - 9:17am
Hi there,

I remember when I was still drinking, and really depressed, miserable, filled with self-loathing, anger, and resentment.... I was thinking that suicide would be a better alternative than to feel the way I was feeling. I even believed that my DD, who was 8 at the time, would be better off without me!

I was at work, and I walked into the office to copy some papers. I heard some laughter and merry conversation. I saw a co-worker, who has what I believed, was an extremely stressful job, laughing at a joke and encouraging someone else with kind words and some helpful suggestions. I wondered who this person was, and why she was so happy. Later, through a series of conversations, she told me she was a recovering alcoholic and a regular member of AA. I watched her over the following months and I wondered if it was possible that I could ever have the kind of peace and serenity and absolute joy that she had.

When I finally realized that alcohol was a part of my problem (not realizing yet that alcohol WAS the problem) I went to this wonderful woman to ask her how she was able to get sober.

I wanted what she had.

She took me to my first AA meeting. I learned that I had a disease that would ultimately end me in jail, or institutionalized, or dead. I learned that my THINKING was the problem and that my drinking was only a symptom of my disease. I got a sponsor who lovingly and patiently showed me how to work the 12 steps. It was suggested that I try an outpatient program and that greatly enhanced my recovery. I learned about the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of alcoholism. It was suggested that I attend meetings daily for at least 90 days. After all, I drank everyday, so an hour a day at a meeting seemed a pretty good trade-off. I was given a list of phone numbers for women in recovery and I was told to call them any time day or night. My sponsor talked with my husband and daughter to help explain some of the problems I was facing. She felt very strongly that my family was critical for part of my support system - and that keeping my family in tact was so important. In time, I learned to change some of my behaviors - for example, I would learn to sit quietly, or go for a walk, pray to my Higher Power, and call a friend whenever I felt overwhelmed with emotions - especially anger and resentment. I learned to do some things that improved my self esteem - such as do something for someone else without expecting anything in return. I learned about the basics of self-care - eating, sleeping, exercising - all the things I had overlooked when I was drinking. I learned that doing esteemable acts would result in a good self-esteem. I learned that looking at my part in arguments was extremely beneficial. I learned that I was not alone.

Today, I consider myself free from bondage of alcohol and drugs. I laugh freely and I anger far less quickly. I had to make some changes in the way I did things and the result was an internal change - a new-found peace of mind and a happiness that I cannot adequately express.

Did I want what my friend had? You betcha!!!! Today, through some effort, work, self-examination, I am truly happy, joyous and free. It wasn't easy. It didn't happen overnight. Some days are harder than others - that is life!!! But I don't think about drinking today. I don't have a physical craving. I enjoy going to AA meetings and love the comradery and friendship I have there. Most of all,I love the laughter.

God bless,

Leslie

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2003
Sat, 09-11-2004 - 11:18am

Thank you Leslie,


That was a very well thought out post.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-28-2004
Sat, 09-11-2004 - 11:24am
Leslie,

You put so much joy and hope into my life reading your story.

as we say thank you in our language "kleco-kleco," from the

bottom of my heart.

When I hear positive solutions too one's experience of alcoholism..

Gives me a touch of faith.

I have to run off to work now.... shoot i get so caught up on this

board... reading... lol.. luv ya all... thanks.. have a beautiful

weekend leslie & everyone one else on the board.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Sat, 09-11-2004 - 6:57pm
Thank you Leslie, what a great story!

Linds
iVillage Member
Registered: 06-30-2002
Sat, 09-11-2004 - 7:57pm

Leslie, that is so awesome.


 


"OMG, I got engaged, the world will never be the same!...."


&nbs

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-03-2004
Sun, 09-12-2004 - 9:09am

Leslie,


Hi ya! Thank you for sharing that. When you want what another person has, it takes work. You have done a fine job getting what you want out of life. You are truly an inspiration to others.


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