They say if you hang out in the barber shop enough that you’re eventually going to get a haircut. What if you’re bald? This analogy is also supposed to apply to the alcoholic. If a sober alcoholic hangs out at too many bars, the school of thought is that they are eventually going to drink. I’ve learned over the past 8 years of sobriety that everyone is different. However as alcoholics we all have one thing in common, and that’s the fact that we can no longer drink if we plan on living productive lives.
Through 12 step meetings I’ve met people in so many different spaces of their lives. Ones that are just getting dry and going through the withdrawals. There are some who attend and tell gripping stories and some who are just there to listen. Some who stay for part of a meeting and some who stay hours after at the coffee shops with other members just for the fellowship and a solution to being alone with their own scary thoughts.
In the beginning of my journey I used to go to meetings everyday sometimes twice a day. I was on parole for 3 years and even though I knew it looked great for the parole board, it was actually something that I needed to do for me. I did all the things an alcoholic is supposed to do, like; getting a sponsor, learning the 12 steps and passing it along by helping others. I spoke at people’s sobriety anniversaries and various outreach programs. Eventually though my involvement with the 12 step meetings dwindled. I attended way less AA meetings until now none at all.
I still don’t drink and still do not have the desire but I’ve been tested. I’ve tasted alcohol off of a woman’s lips as she made me reminisce about my past crazy times. At some point I don’t know if I was addicted to her or the place that her taste would take me mentally. Whatever it was I found it really hard to seperate myself from her, resulting in a need for a another inventory check of myself and my own mental state. I deal with depression and anxiety even though I speak easily on camera and in public. It’s a weird oxymoron being a public person who is really an introvert, sort of like the “Sober Emcee”. However at this point I’m aware that I’m kind of a complex individual.
As emceeing has evolved to podcasting, I find myself in the liquor store way more often purchasing alcohol for my guest, more tests.
So what’s my point here? The issue here is how long can this last? Is my path the right path? I feel that everyone is different and anyone who has arrived at these sober locations has used their own moral GPS’ to get here. My mom always said, “Cat luck ain’t dog luck.” so I don’t suggest anyone struggling with addictions to use my present way of thinking as a blueprint for their sobriety.
I’ve mentioned a lot of helpful ways to battle addiction above like 12 step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous, getting a sponsor. These are very effective ways of addressing and finding your way out of addiction.
In closing I use my rock bottom as a fear mechanism to never drink again, no one likes to spend holidays in a cell.