I still remember the tough time I had for the 5 months leading up to this date 24 years ago. I hope never to have to go through that again. Of course the 10 years leading up to my bottom were quite unpleasant as well.
Sobriety is not a gift, it is a choice. It is not handed to anyone, it has to be worked for. And it is not guaranteed, it is only a daily reprieve. I an thankful I have the tools to help me to make that choice on a daily basis.
Life isn’t easy, but at least today I am awake for it. Problems are no longer insurmountable, just difficult. Nothing has now, or ever was, handed to me; but today I know how to get on the path that leads to a a reachable goal. (Except the path where I buy a lottery ticket.)
The goal was always impossible to get to. That is because I wanted to take a short cut. Today I know the goal is about taking the next step in front of me. One leads to two, leads to the goal. There is no way to shorten that path. The biggest example of that lesson for me was my son’s adoption. On the face of it the initial thought of being a dad was an impossibility. We didn’t have the money or the skill to be at the end of the adoption process. But we could go to a support group. We could take it 1 step at a time. We could hold onto a thread of hope. We could hear how other gay people accomplished it. We could hire a social worker, we could plan a move to a bigger apartment, we could take advice on which lawyer to hire. Then we could listen to the lawyer and hire an assistant to aid us in the process. And all along the path we could trust God. God is what I have nicknamed my higher power. Our miracle child was born on May 29, 2003 and I was in the delivery room, turns out I didn’t even dream big enough! I did the work to get to that point, I walked through every step, I showed up for myself, and I did not do it alone. I now know nothing is impossible, I just have to have the willingness to work for it.
And it’s all about the 12 steps. And they don’t have to be about powerlessness over alcohol. You can substitute anything that is a problem in your life. These tools are simple and remarkable. And I am grateful to have them to guide me in my life. I am grateful for the spiritual path they have led me to.
I don’t always like the life I have today, but I am grateful that I have it. And for that I thank my higher power, one day at a time.