21 days without a drink, minus the Nyquil the last few nights. It’s good man. Back in March’ish of ’10 I made it to about 27 days white knuckling it on my own.  No sponsor.  No regular meetings I can recall, tho I was prolly going to a couple here and there.  Since 1999 that is the longest I have ever gone without a drink. 27 days.  With the 27 I ended up going on a biz trip and had first class seats and a free happy hour hotel that did me in.  Too much temptation, no sponsor, no meetings, and was away from the family (party time right? No dumbass).

Prior to the 27, I did 40 days once.  Waaaay back in 1999.  It’s 2011 now.  40 days ring a bell?  Yup, I gave it up for Lent that year.  I spose you could still call me Catholic, tho I haven’t been to mass in ages.  I was brought up Catholic and back then I still had enough dogma in me to do a few things catholic.  That was a particularly difficult thing to do in ’99.  Spring of 1999 was my last semester of College.  Was going on a few recruiting trips, and there was always the opportunity to drink.  One parTICularly painful experience was the interview trip I had to Detroit MI with Ford Motor Company.  Flight from Gainesville FL to Detroit MI.  70’s when I left and snowing when I got there.  Ford put us up in the Ritz Carlton and conducted a very structured interview process where we stayed in our rooms and had a revolving door of managers come in and talk with us, as well as give us group problem solving sessions.  Then there was the dinner they threw for us in the hotel, with the open bar.  THAT.SUCKED.  There were a few other trips that spring, but the one I remember the most was that.  The Ritz, and the open bar.  They also took us to the Dearborn proving grounds and let us drive a bunch of cars, and get a plant tour.  Pretty cool.

I was past 21 at that point and had enough in the monthly budget from the folks to afford plenty of booze.  Don’t remember exactly why I decided to stop drinking for Lent but I did. Prolly b/c I thought I might be drinking too much and/or it was contributing to the freshman 50.

And it was hard. Because I was doing it alone.

The last time with the 27 days it was hard.  Because I was doing it alone.

This time sitting at 21 it’s relatively easy.  Because I’m not doing it alone.

Low and behold having a support network works wonders.  A sponsor and walking in to a room full of people that know what you’re going through without even having to say a word is just indescribable.  Normal people don’t get it.  But folks at meetings do.  I can walk into a meeting anywhere in the world and I share a bond with anyone in that room just because of what we’re going through.  (now for the naysayers who at this point are getting pissed b/c I’m glossing over the wreckage to family, friends, and the like left in the wake of our drinking let me just say I’m not downplaying that wreckage, it’s simply not the point of my point.  Get it? Hee hee…..lookin at you Still Here)

Dude in a meeting the other night was talking about how just one beer can lead to ruination.  Quoted the exact page out of the big book.  That impressed me. Chapter 2 pg 24 btw.

Another dude in a meeting the other night was talking about how when he got started some guy was getting his 6 month chip.  He was just amazed at this guy getting his 6 month chip, and the guy was HAPPY about not drinking for 6 months!  Dude in the meeting was saying how he just sat there and said to himself “I want that”.  To not drink and be happy about it.

My sponsor a week or two ago quoted me a saying out of the book and told me what page it was to go look at it myself.  It’s about “wanting to want to” quit.   (bottom of page 109 btw.  109.  19)

Last few meetings I’ve been to it’s been repeated by one or another person: you don’t have to drink today.  Now to a normal person that statement may not make much sense, but to an alcoholic, it is a safe harbor in a storm.

And another btw….you don’t have to go buy the Big Book.  I’ve got the entire Big Book downloaded to my phone in pdf files I can read whenever I want, wherever I have my phone.  Same thing for the 12 Steps 12 Traditions book.   Both of which can be viewed or downloaded free at the www.aa.org website. From the main page, click on AA Literature, then Books.  If you want a hardcopy, I’m sure you can order from there also, or just go to any bookstore, or local AA group.  Most have copies for sale.  Email me if you need any help.

All meetings I’ve gone to use a “chip” system because we’re playing with our lives.  They’re simple poker chips.  Different colors represent different things.  The white chip represents surrender, you’re willing to give in and start working the program. Yellow is the sober 30 days chip, then 90 days, then 6 months, 1 year, etc, etc…. I haven’t stood up for the white chip.  I don’t want to.  Still too pig headed to admit surrender even tho I’m technically in the program now and working the steps.  I’m counting down the days till that 30 day chip tho.  Gonna carry that bitch in my wallet wherever I go.  Gonna guard it jealously.

So, to the rapist I say this:  I’m no longer white knuckling it.  You were right.

~ by sobriety6923 on September 6, 2011.

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