showing up for life seems like a rather simple concept. but for an alcoholic like myself, showing up for life was difficult. near impossible. and rather terrifying. that is why i drank. life, and the people who make up life, were unapproachable to me. and i drank to get away from it all. to avoid showing up for reality and the people who lived in my reality. when i was in a blackout, reality was not in sight. and that was the goal. that is where i wanted to be.
but it stopped working. and that is when my life began.
i have entered my second year of sobriety, and things are quit different then they once were. blackouts no longer exist in my world, and reality is at the forefront of every waking day. life stares me down. and i show up for it. people are all around me. i don’t run from them. they need me, i show up for them.
i deal with life on life’s terms, not mine.
i am currently going through an emotional time with a very ill family member. it’s been going on for a few years, but has recently become much more critical. it’s hard to see. hard to watch. difficult to witness the suffering. but it’s not about how hard it is for me. it’s about showing up for her, and the rest of the family during this time. it’s about being present through it all. it’s about showing love and compassion. it sounds so….logical doesnt it? it is. however, 1 year and 15 days ago, it wasn’t so logical for me to be there for my loved ones. i resented having to show up. i didn’t know how to deal with the feelings involved. i ignored it all. hid from it. lied in order to not have to show up. it wasn’t about my family back then, and their needs. it was about me, and my selfishness. my inability to deal. the distance between me and my feelings. i never want to be that person again. ever.
through recovery and my sobriety, i am growing into the person i always wanted to be, but could never find. the person i sought out through drugs and alcohol. little did i know the distance between her and I only grew further the more i drank and used. it’s hard to find yourself in a blackout!
im so grateful that today i am able to show up for myself. i show up for my family, and my friends. i show up for life.
yes, i have moments where the thought of “escape” sounds appealing. spotlights shine down on the fantasy of disappearing from reality for a bit. when those thoughts arise, i be sure to follow the story to the very end in my head. cause its the end of the story that brought me to my bottom. and i must never forget that. when i think the drink through, i can let go of that fantasy with very little hesitation. and i can rejoin my happy reality.
alcoholism changed me. sobriety saved me.