Sunday, August 28, 2005

Freedom & Happiness

Our drinking was connected with many habits - big and little. Some of them were thinking habits, or things we felt inside ourselves. Others were doing habits - things we did, actions we took. In getting used to not drinking, we have found that we needed new habits to take the place of those old ones.


Except for the 4 years I worked, during my last 10 years of drinking I was usually at home or at the bar. All my friends were at the bar. All of them. I knew nobody else.

When I began attending AA meetings, I met new people. Made new friends. People who didn't drink, yet were happy. People who talked about ways to change my life. They said change didn't have to hurt. But I continued to drink for another 3 months because I was afraid. Afraid to stop. I couldn't imagine what my life would be like if I stopped. But I knew where it was going if I didn't stop.

I finally did stop when I asked my HP to help me. The lifelong craving/obsession was removed from me.

I went to AA meetings every day; often twice each day. But I still went to the bar every day. I just didn't drink alcohol; I changed from rum & coke to Cranberry juice. The bar was a habit and I thought the people there were my friends.

It was about the time I worked Step 9, with my sponsor, that my sober life took a new turn. I cleaned up the wreckage of my past (the best I possibly could) and I finally stopped going to the bar. It was no longer any fun. I have not been back since and have not missed it for one minute.

The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous tells us that after working the first 9 steps, our lives will change; the Promises will begin to be realized. This was certainly true in my case. The 1st Promise reads ...

"We will know a new freedom and happiness."

I'll go along with that.


JERKJ said...

Yes well, not yet. I've deen so down lately, and I'm on my fourth week. I looked into the site you recommended with the chat room. I did an online meeting the other day. I've been to four in the real world. My husband thinks AA is depressing me. I think my depression is a direct result from not drinking, which took the edge off my depression. I hate to be a drag for others, but any words of wisdom to share friend?

doughgirl said...

Well hot damn...I am on 6, 7 &8've informed me that I will work 6 and 7 forever, so Im making my list and dreading the ammends Actually I am quite looking forward to most of it, well some of it, well maybe a little of it..Promises you say???? Well allrighty then, Ill get moving...freedom and peace sound wonderful :) P.s. I just told you where I am and now I am starting over at an awol next


Great post HP. And Jerkj alcohol is a depressant! Just take it one day at a time!

Pat said...

Jerkj, you are experiencing what I call Addictive-depressive disorder. In other words, your depression is a way for your addiction to get you to change your mind and drink again. has more info not 12-step related. The good folks here have great advice within their own paradigm.

Ricky!!! said...

Thanks for posting this. I am going through some funk. This is motivation to work these steps and be relieved of the bondage of self.

Trudging said...

For me depression and drinking were linked. You may want to talk to a professional about your depression.

Grace said...

HP ~ Its funny the habit thing, but I sometimes wonder if this is why AA meetings dont appeal to me. I've never been a drinking in a bar person, all my drinking is done at home, if I did, I expect the social side of attending meetings would go a long way to fill the void of the bar habit.

Jerkj ~ Alcohol is a depressant, some say there are 2 types of folk. Those whose depression is caused by drinking and those who drink to self medicate exsisting depression. My depression lifts when I dont drink, maybe you need to seek advice from your GP if it doesnt go. Whichever it is for you, drinking wont help and as Pat says dont let it lead to drinking again?

Da Gal said...

Hey there! Great site. I see that you have linked my friend Julie, of how to avoid washing the dishes to your site. I would like to add your site as a link from my site. If you're interested feel free to do the same...
I think my site is called bingoaddict. If I am wrong... the real name is a link from Julies site.
I will have to come back and keep reading. I love what I see so far. Keep spreading the message. As we have heard... when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.
Peace -