It was a dark and stormy night….
No… really… It was a dark and stormy night. I was six years sober at the time. SIX YEARS SOBER AND I STILL HAD THE OBSESSION TO DRINK! YIKES!
Don’t ask my how I could have pulled that off. How can a drunk, who is drooling for a drink, not drink… for six years. Fear. That’s all I can say. Plain fear. Unadulterated fear. I’d had a vision of my life if I’d continued down the drinking path, and it wasn’t pretty. It was a horror movie. God showed me my future in living color six years before that, and I couldn’t deny the truth of that future if I continued to drink the way I was doing. And I couldn’t stop the drinking the way I was doing it. So I dragged myself to A.A. and they got me sober.
But they couldn’t get me to stop hankering for the booze. All they could do was to get me to stop drinking it. So this hankering went on for six agonizing years.
Until I’d had enough.
The critical day happened around my sixth year sober anniversary. I sat at my kitchen table, head hanging down. Beaten up black and blue by the obsession. I lifted my head up to the heavens, raised my fist to God and yelled out to Him…
I’ve had it with this God! I’m not going to do it anymore. It’s been six very long years and this obsession isn’t going away or even lessening one bit. You have to take it from me because I can’t do it by myself. If you don’t take it then I’m out-a-here! I’m going back to the bottle. Take this obsession from me. I’ll give You two weeks to do it or I’m gone!
I yelled this thinking I was yelling at the wind. Nothing was going to come of it. I knew I was a gonner. It was only a matter of two weeks and I was going to be dead. The drinking was going to kill me and I knew it.
I decided to spend my last to weeks on the planet, in AA. After all, why not? AA was the only friendly place I knew. The people were ok there. They somewhat liked me. More than anyone else around did. So that was that. I’d spend my last days hanging around AA.
But this time it was going to be different. I was going to be my ‘real self’. No more Ms Nice Girl. I was actually ‘Angry Bitch’ inside, not ‘Nice Girl’ the way I’d been playing it for the last six years. Now they’d get a taste of the… real me. I let it rip with both barrels. I came out swinging with both fists.
Boy were they surprised.
F#(@K , S*&T , M&%#F@#$&R . All the filthy words I could sling at them I slung. I didn’t care anymore what they thought of me. After all, I only had to deal them for two weeks. Then I’d be drunk… and dead, so what did it matter what they thought of me.
There was this ‘old timer’ though who didn’t seem to be phased by my inappropriate behavior in the least. One night I saw him in a meeting. After the meeting he went up to talk to a newcomer and I moved over next to him. I liked that he didn’t seem upset with me and my nastiness so I stuck close by. Soon he got out the AA Big Book (AA’s text) and showed the newcomer a sentence in it that read…
Burn into the mind of every new man the
utter hopelessness of ever taking a drink again
if your alcoholic.
I stepped away after I heard him read that. I’d never seen that sentence in the Big Book before and it shocked me for some reason. That sentence hit me in the head like a steal hammer and sent me reeling.
Burn into the mind…
The utter hopelessness…
Of ever taking a drink again….
If your alcoholic.
You know what? That sentence… isn’t in the Big Book. I’ve looked for it… It’s not there. There’s a sentence that reads. “Burn into the mind of every new man that he can get well regardless of circumstances.” But not the sentence above. That sentence above?… I swear to God, God put there… just… for… me.
My head spinning, I stumbled to my car that dark and stormy night, and sat there.. reeling from what I’d just heard the old timer say. Then ‘it’ happened. This is where the spooky stuff begins.
I swear to God. I’m only slightly crazy. Not crazy enough for this to happen.
In the pitch blackness, across the windshield of my car, a movie began. The United States of America engulfed in World War III. My eyes grew wide with fear at what I was seeing. And for that matter, feeling… and smelling.
It was a nuclear holocaust. There were buildings on fire everywhere. Every building was decimated from the nuclear blasts. Fire was everywhere. Buildings on fire or in rubble. Rubble all around me. Dead bodies by the thousands, rats feasting on them. The stench filled my nostrils. It was pure horror.
My windshield from one side to the other was involved in this scene. Not a single inch of the country escaped the carnage. There was no escaping it. I was completely trapped and paralyzed with fear at what I was witnessing. What was happening to me?
Then I heard God’s voice say to me.
That’s your life on booze dear.
Do you still want that?
It was a real question. Not a demanding one, a ‘question-question.’ I was given the option of drinking or not if I so chose. But if I chose to drink, I knew that something akin to that would be the end result. The scene got my attention like nothing else ever did before. God had come to my rescue after all!!! And it was only a week after I’d given Him the ultimatum and the two weeks.
Well. Did I still want that? What do you think?
My inner-most ‘reservation’ instantly disappeared. The Big Book states that we have to know to our ‘inner most self’ that we can not drink and that this is the first step in recovery – Step 1 – I was holding this reservation for the entire six years I’d been sober.
Way down deep inside of me I thought of alcohol as an easy fix out of my problems and pain. The people in AA said that sobriety would give me peace… eventually, but it seemed to me that it was taking longer and was a lot harder to get there by not drinking, than the drinking took. This was the ‘reservation’ I’d been holding onto which kept me from jumping into AA’s program with both feet. This reservation I held onto was what was making sobriety so hard and what was making it take so long to get that peace all the AA people told me was there.
But the vision destroyed my reservation. It knocked it out so that one hundred percent of me was on board with sobriety. I walked away from the experience a free woman. Free from the obsession to drink from that day to this. Thirty five years later, the obsession has never returned.