So I’ve been feeling weird lately. And at nearly ten months of sobriety I am realizing that there is something wrong. There is something not letting me move forward, and lately I have been feeling numb. I am starting to ask myself, why am I not happy?
Well yesterday I ran into a high school friend and we talked a little about the past. We brought a friend of ours who passed away in high school when he was shot in the head by a rival gang member. He was senior while I was a freshman and that was very first time I went to a funeral of a person who was not related to me.
So I was thinking today, I get these thoughts in my head of the past, usually on a daily basis and I think about all the things Ive been apart of, all the bad things and for some reason I can shake those memories from my head.
Then it hit me. Its not that I’m not happy of feeling numb, I think I am overwhelmed with guilt, and it preventing from moving forward. I used drugs and alcohol for over twenty three years to cover up a lot of guilt, so I think it would make sense that I am not familiar with the feeling.
So if Im correct, the numbs I feel is guilt, and unless I take a look at it, it will keep getting those horrific thoughts of the pass and I will not move forward. The only question now is, how do I deal with guilt?
AAAHHHHH! Today is one of those days that I don’t need an excuse to drink or use. Today is one of those days when I don’t feel like calling my sponsor or going to a meeting. Today is one of those days that I could easily throw over nine months of sobriety away along with my family, job, finances and pretty much my life.
So what do I do when the reality of sobriety is not that everything is perfect every single day just because I decided not to use or drink. And for no reason whatsoever I feel like drinking and using. Well, yeah, your right for one thing I blog. (there’s nothing getting past you!) And to put it simple and boring, and hold on. I call it a day. The only thing I have to do today is not use and drink, and pick my daughter…and cook dinner….and pick up my meds…and..and…and…!
OKay, breath, (see how easy it is for me to lose control). Let me think this out, what was Day 1 like?
I was a fucking mess. Wife had left months ago, rented out my house, was about to lose the house I was renting, and staying at my parents house because I thought the house I was renting had cameras and audio surveillance. I was currently had a few home remodel job sites going, a paper route and a bag full of dope. I was easily going on a month without sleep, just cat naps here and there, or, like a cat! So it was two in the morning and I was stuck between my laptop and looking out my bedroom window. I pulled up my Facebook, my vision was blurry and I could not remember the last time I ate, however I swore I saw someone had posted a picture of me, in the bedroom on Facebook getting high. I never found that picture again, however I did find a picture of her. Posted fifteen minutes ago. She look stunning, of course she did, she was divorcing me! Why dress up while were married right, I know, I know. Anyway, she was wearing a red sweater over a blue jean skirt and she was drunk and dancing at her sisters party. With guys in the background checking her out, my stomach dropped. I couldn’t drive and I could not talk. I wanted to go over there so bad. I had never felt so helpless and hopeless in my entire life. That picture and that night still haunts me. My wife, happy without me.
So the next day I checked into a treatment center and lived happily ever after…JUST KIDDING….It was really hard work, and still hard work but I got my family back, and our house and my career. At least today I do. So yeah, I guess I’m going to go with “no” on drinking and using today, and I have never gone back to Facebook since then!
So a couple of days ago I hit nine months sober. It felt really good and I am proud of myself. It is a great accomplishment after twenty-three years of using and drinking. I do understand that I am no way cured, I will never be. I will always be an addict and alcoholic and there is things I need to do on a daily basis that help keep me sober just for today.
During these nine months a lot has changed, and it is interesting because everything is the same all around me, the only thing that changes was in my head. I can see so clearly now, I truly was in a dark place, lost and miserable. One my greatest challenges today is to stay motivated on a daily basis to stay sober and work my recovery.
With all that said, I feel it is time to move on from the very past that I usually blog about. In an learning setting looking back at your past is huge and recommended. Closing unresolved issues was huge in me moving forward in sobriety, however lately I feel I still identify myself as that active addict and alcoholic and feel its no longer a healthy exercise.
I feel good, I feel excited. It is time to work on me and my family. My personal goals along with family goals. Its time to move forward like mature adults do and be a productive member of society. Contribute, help and live. Dwelling on the past is keeping me there and It is time to move forward.
However I say this with the respect to my sobriety and keeping it my primary purpose in life. My recovery still must come first, it must start my day and end it. I do have solid foundation to lean on if I feel the heat, and of course, meetings, still daily. I am no good to anyone if I start using and drinking again. NO ONE.
So with that said, today, I close the door to my past, hold on, and move forward, and that’s what living in sobriety is all about-for me.
I have started a new blog ( because I love to write) called, Dad Speak, be the first to check-it-out!Thanks…jrvaldes
So, today is seven months sober. It has been a huge transition from my life back in July 2011, when I started this recovery journey. It has been a complete life change, that at times was not easy. It certainly did not happen over night, however I am starting to smile a little bit more at my current life, thus where “holding on” is huge. It is a process, recovery that is, different phases of sobriety that I am going through and will continue to go through. Today, and it actually started yesterday, I looked forward to my day, to responsibilities, and to my life, sober. I have never woke up or gone to sleep with such content on the upcoming day unless I was in self.
In a few days my wife and I will be moving back in together after nineteen months of separation. And YES I am nervous! Going up in front of the judge nervous.
Our house has been rented out for the past year and a half to her sister. Last weekend her family and I moved her sister out, and our belongings in. There is not a part in that house where I did not get high or drunk. Wait I take that back, I do not think I got high in the baby’s room, but everywhere else was a go. Attic, bathrooms, bedrooms, hallway, living room, den, both garages, back porch, every side of the house outside and my favorite the counter table which I spent so many nights alone getting high looking out the back window.
My palms sweat as I wrote that. Nearly six months of sobriety and sometimes it feels like day one.
So the move, It is interesting, I realized it is like we are starting our marriage over brand new, however sober. And it is weird because now that I am making a conscience effort to live on a daily basis in sobriety, my real issues shine bright and those are the things I need to work along with staying clean.
I guess the physical act of not using and drinking, after twenty-three years, is merely the beginning of my recovery. I have battled and struggled through, gangs, prison, my degree and horrible addiction, to find myself now about to be married once again to the beautiful woman who has emotionally stood by side this entire time.
So, I am nervous of being a sober part of a marriage, something I have never done before. However I guess if I stay focused on my daily sobriety, hopefully my marriage will have a different outcome than last.
So, to catch you up…
Shelly is a white girl crack head from Austin that I met at treatment in Wimberlee, Texas. After our discharge I went on to a sober home in San Marcos, Texas and she went on to relapse. I ended up running into her at an AA meeting in San Marcos and persuaded her to live at the sober home I was now managing when she gets out. And she did….however first how I even became a manager with only two months of sobriety…
Jack is a little man. A snake in the grass kind of little man, the sober-home grass. He’s got me by fifteen years in age maybe. He leases the thirteen acres the sober homes are set on, he is the reason why I am sober today. He has his own unique twelve step program that has kept him sober from drinking and crack for nearly twenty years. He is constantly moving, praying and doing service work around the property. But lately he has been acting sketching.
I woke up one morning and noticed Jacks van was no where on the block. That stuck me as odd, however as much as he moves around, I did not let the curiosity get to me. But, the thing that did concern me was the night before. Jack came in my room and we started reading the big book together. He said he was confused about his wife and his girlfriend Trudy. He was shaky. Then he left on a whim.
So, I did not see Jack all morning, and I started to think the worse. I was still trying to stay positive, however when Trudy asked me if I had talk to Jack today, I knew he went out. He was not answer her call, or anyone elses.
The next day, John, the other house manager, a crack-head that has a year of sobriety, said Jack called him, and said he had spun off on a crack binge and he was now in detox. Jack also said to tell me, I was in charge of the top floor, which is all women.
That night three other people used and drank and got kicked out. I had to escort them off the property in the middle of the night…..I almost drank and used myself, but that’s next weeks story.
I was not planning on sharing at the AA meeting this afternoon, however, Tom an older gentlemen that I once despised asked me to speak. I guess I could of said no, but in a way, yeah I had to get something out.
I am at a new club, the first four months I was in a different city, and now that I am back home, not everyone knows my story. So I touched on it a little, kind of formally introduced my alcoholic and drug addicted ass to the group.
I am thirty-eight years old and have been drinking and using since I was fourteen. At seventeen I was wanted for murder, at twenty-four the FEDs were looking for me. Twenty-six through thirty-one I was in prison. Got released, got my journalism degree and married over the next few years. Throughout all this time I was using and drinking. MY disease progressed, I lost jobs, houses, my family, and a small business, however everything was cool as long as I could still drink and get high.
My life came crashing down last summer, relapsed in December and now have over six straight months. That is the short and quick version of how I got here. I know it is broad, but there is no rush to get every little detail out. My primary purpose every day is to stay sober.
I hit six months Saturday. So much has changed since a year ago. I started my recovery last July, relapsed in December, and now clean for six months. It has been my experience that it is hard work living sober, on a daily basis. I was not the person I am today. The person who had been using and drinking for twenty-three years is a person that you do not see at meetings. At fourteen and started drinking and using drugs. At seventeen I was wanted for murder. At twenty four the FBI was looking for me. At twenty-six I went to prison. At thirty-two I got married. At thirty-seven I lost my wife, my business, my house and honestly did not care. My primary purpose every day was to get loaded. I physically had to get high, just to feel normal, then the hunt was on for the rest of the day. And the sad part, I still at times think drinking and using is good idea. Thats my disease, thats how it works on a daily bases. I am aware of that today, so I keep things real simple. Just dont use or drink today. Goto meetings, work my steps, work with the felloship and go to bed sober. Thats the deal, thats how I got six months.