Never has my sobriety been more in question than it is this time of year.
Tis the season to be jolly.
Tis the season to be drunk.
And drunks have never been kind to me.
They are mean, vindictive, forgetful and self-centered to the max.
And they are totally familiar.
The luckiest ones are totally surrounded by loving, doting enablers. Those who tiptoe around said offender so as to keep the peace.
And what kind of peace is that I wonder?
The kind of peace that alienates the sober ones. The ones who have been there, done that and are sick and tired of being sick and tired.
The ones who have lost it all and are fighting to get it back.
And there are still losses but to be sober in a world of drunks is everything.
Nothing to them, however. They don’t even notice.
But I know something they don’t know.
Anything I put ahead of my sobriety, I am going to lose.
Especially at this time of year.
And I’ve already lost a lot.
The trick is to keep your dignity in tact while fighting, one day at a time to regain your self-respect, your sense of worth, your balance, your life.
I’ve never needed the ‘approval’ of drunks less than I do right here, right now.
I know what I speak of.
I’ve been there. And I wasn’t a kind drunk either. I was as mean, vindictive, forgetful and self-centered as the rest of them.
But I had lots of company back then. I fit right in. I was anonymous.
Which brings me to the point about the true cost of sobriety.
It’s about decisions that have already alienated me from those who are still on the ‘low’ road.
I’ve worked hard to stay sober, all these years, sometimes against incredible odds, the constant push of society to ‘have one for the road’, the resentment and fear of those less sober, and anyone who doesn’t understand the concept of the ‘compulsion’ to drink. The fact that I can have one, and then one after another.
But, despite the loneliness, the misunderstandings and the alienation, I wouldn’t change a thing.
Because I know the true cost of sobriety would be to lose it now, after all these years, and never get it back…