Archive for September, 2012

Yes, I am grateful that I am an alcoholic!  Do I miss alcohol?  About once a year, on a really hot afternoon, I will have flashes in my mind of a cold bottle of Budweiser.  It’s always Bud!  That, in my mind, signifies the best way to beat the heat.

Then the thought passes and I move on with my life with a cold glass of lemonade.

So I don’t miss alcohol and I’ll tell you something else I don’t miss:  I don’t miss the hangovers…I don’t miss the feelings of hopelessness….I don’t miss the loneliness….I don’t miss the obsessions…..I don’t miss the lack of morals…..I don’t miss hurting others.

You see, once I gave up, and once I admitted I had a problem, I was forced to look at me, and thus began the journey to a better life.  Once I had changed who I am I was able to fully enjoy life.  I was able to be the father I had always wanted to be.  I was able to be a good friend, a caring neighbor, and a loving companion.  I was able to be a productive member of society, and my life has never been fuller or more enriching.

All because I am an alcoholic.

Yes, life is good today, and it gets better each and every day….and it can for you as well!

Read Full Post »

“The road is long, with many a winding turn.”

Thank you to an old rock group called The Hollies for that verse, and does that not describe our journey of alcoholism and recovery?

I found a great website that has information about alcohol treatment clinics in the United States.  You can find it here http://www.alcoholtreatmentclinics.com/.

I’m a big advocate of clinics, but only ones that not only treat the addiction but also treat the psychology of addiction. Yes, they cost a great deal of money, but what price do you put on a life free of addiction? Compare the price of a treatment center against the price that you have paid for booze or drugs over your lifetime.

Clinics and treatment centers give us the opportunity to get away from the outside world and learn about the world inside of our heads, because remember, alcohol is but a symptom of our real problem, and our real problem is us!

May you find the peace you so justly deserve!

Read Full Post »

We alcoholics do not want to hear this truth at first, but it must be heard and internalized.  Alcohol was our crutch, our way of dealing with life.  It may have started out innocently enough, just a few beers with friends, a way to unwind.  Eventually, though, it became so much more, a way of hiding from reality, and a way of hiding from the truth….that we are the problem.

Once we admitted that fact, and made a commitment to end the madness, then we could attack the real problem.  At that point we were willing to do anything to free ourselves from the insanity, including changing who are were.

A spiritual life is the only solution!  Living according to a set of principles that shrink ego and expand humility was the only solution.  The miracle today is not that we aren’t drinking, but that we have no desire to ever drink again.

That is freedom!  That is recovery!  That is life!

Read Full Post »

Withdrawals are a serious matter.  This fact needs to be taken very seriously.

I have had friends die from alcohol and drug withdrawals, and I, for one, believe that medical assistance should always be sought before stopping alcohol or drugs cold turkey.

If you cannot afford a hospital visit, or a prolonged in-patient care facility, find a detox center in your area.  Most often they are free, and they can provide medical supervision while you are coming down off of the physical craving.  It takes a minimum of three days for the alcohol and/drugs to leave your system, and they can be the longest three days of your life (or the last three days of your life).

If you are unwilling or unable to even get to a detox center, then at least have a friend or family member with you when you attempt to quit.  This is not an experience that should be faced alone.

I would love to sugarcoat this for you, but withdrawals are tough, and can be deadly.  Remember, in order to live in sobriety, you must be willing to go to any lengths, and this is the first step towards freedom.

For more on this, see this helpful website.

Read Full Post »

It can seem overwhelming; believe me, I know!  Alcohol has been a part of your life for decades, and at times it has seemed like the best friend you have in the world.  It has given you comfort when you were down, and it has given you strength when you were feeling weak.

Now you are being asked to give it up!  How will you ever have fun again?  How will you ever be able to face the problems you have?  How will you ever be able to have a relationship with anyone?

Well, millions of us have asked those same questions, and millions of us have found a way to live a full and happy life without alcohol.  There is a solution!

I can tell you from experience that you have to shut off thoughts about the future; it isn’t here yet so quit thinking about it!  The future seems insurmountable, so quit thinking about it.  Concentrate on one day….and if you have to, concentrate on one hour.  Hell, anyone can stay sober for one hour, right?

When that hour is over, concentrate on the next hour, and then the next, and so on.  Before you know it, tomorrow will be here and you can do the same thing again.  Eventually you will find that there is life after alcohol; for many of us, it is the only life worth living.

Time takes time!  One hour at a time…one day at a time….freedom from addiction is waiting for you!

Read Full Post »

Alcoholism is the “alone disease.”  For most of us, we just want to be left alone to drink by ourselves.  We push away from loved ones so that we can just spend time with our true best friend….alcohol.

When we start on the road to recovery, it is so important to end this “alone” cycle.  Recovery is so much easier if we reach out for help.  Using a sponsor in AA is crucial so that you can learn how to do this recovery thing correctly.  If you are not in AA, then finding sober friends who can support you is also crucial.

Remember, you are trying to start a new life, an alcohol-free life, and that means separating yourself from alcohol and friends who drink to excess.  Early on in sobriety it is best not to associate with active drinkers; it is just too much of a temptation to be around alcohol.

Whatever you choose to do, remember that you need to end the “alone” tendencies.  Find sober friends, begin to build your life around sobriety, and also begin to enjoy life to the fullest.

Read Full Post »

If you are an alcoholic and have a family, chances are excellent that damage has been done.  You may not be physically abusive, but most certainly there has been emotional and psychological abuse, and that abuse is your responsibility.

Saying you are sorry is hollow if not followed up by a change in behavior, an honest attempt to right the ship that has been floundering since the drinking began.

Remember that all the while you have been drinking to excess, your loved ones have been living a life of uncertainty and concern.  Damage has been done!  They may, in fact, not forgive you, or that forgiveness may be a long time in coming.

Your number one priority is sobriety; whether forgiveness comes is for your family to determine.  You cannot force forgiveness to happen; you can only concentrate on changing your life and showing a sincere intention to become, once more, the husband and father that you once were before alcohol changed everything.

Read Full Post »

Are you ready to enjoy life?  Are you ready to live a life free of guilt and shame?  Are you ready to live a life of truth, and to wake up each day with a clear head and a healthy body?

Are you ready to form honest relationships with people and to be respected again?  Are you ready to become a productive member of society?

If so, then the first step you have to take is admit that you have a drinking problem.  Then, and this is fairly important, put the plug in the jug and quit drinking.  After that, we just take it a day at a time, or a half hour at a time, but we do not drink no matter what!

Does that sound easy?  Well, it isn’t!  Ending our addiction is the hardest thing any of us will do, but the rewards are beyond our imagination.  For those of us who have been sober a few years now, we are living lives we once only dreamed about, and we are living them without the constant reinforcement of alcohol.

It is a life of freedom and it is waiting for all of you….if you want it!

Read Full Post »

Yes, one step at a time!  When I was early in sobriety I thought those who claimed to have years of sobriety were lying.  There was no way that was possible, but of course that is normal thinking for someone who has been married to booze for so long.

Recovery really is a daily gig!  You get up and go about your daily living, concentrating on those things that keep you sober.  You surround yourself with supportive, sober friends, or at the very least supportive normies, and you take care of the spiritual life that has been missing for so long.

Before you know it, you have a month, and then six months, and then you are one of those who is speaking in terms of years rather than days.

Time takes time; there is no easy way to find sobriety, but once you have found it, maintaining it becomes surprisingly easy.

One of my mentors in AA used to say that the miracle wasn’t that he wasn’t drinking; rather, the miracle was that he no longer thinks of drinking or has any desire to drink.  That my friends is Nirvana for an alcoholic.

I invite you to watch my video on alcoholism at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EakW8mlNE24&feature=player_embedded.

My best to you!

Read Full Post »

I have never been arrested!  No DUI’s, no jail time, no court-required appearances.  I never wrecked my car while driving drunk, never caused any physical damage to property, and amazingly suffered no permanent damage to my body.

That does not, however, mean that I am unscathed from the effects of alcohol.  It simply means that I am lucky.

Quite frankly, I am also lucky to be an alcoholic, and to have gone through what I experienced.  It was all necessary for me to grow into the person I am today.  All of the pain, all of the heartache, it all brought me to this place, right here, right now, and I am the happiest I have ever been.

Alcoholism forced me to take a look at myself, and to begin a journey of self-discovery and self-improvement.  I am the new, improved Bill, and I like this guy a lot more than the old Bill.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »