Friday, August 5, 2011

20 big ones

I'm here to share that today is my AA anniversary.  I am celebrating 20 years of continuous sobriety, and my gratitude and wonder at that fact know no bounds.  I'm darned proud of myself, though I could never have done this alone.  Never. 

While I wasn't an under the bridge drinking from a bottle in a brown paper bag when I was shown the way into the rooms of AA and started the most important journey of my life, my bottom was low enough.  Pretty early on in my sober journey, when I still wanted to drink every day and was holding on by the skin on my teeth, I would say to people in the program, "Maybe I haven't hit bottom yet".  I was hoping against hope would tell me that it would be okay to drink if I hadn't hit bottom. 

Guess what?  Nobody said that to me.  One day a woman responded to my glib and hopeful proclamation about not having hit bottom, "Well, the bottom goes all the way down to death.  But you can get off on any floor you want." 

Sneaky folks, those AAs.  They have an answer for just about any BS a gal (or guy) can sling.  The answer is that there is a solution to the problem of alcoholism that begins with not picking up the first drink.  They don't promise a charmed life, abundant wealth, new cars, jump started careers, healthy happy relationships...the only guarantee I was ever given when I started attending meetings was that I never had to hurt from alcohol again.  And I haven't.  Life is still life - with ups and downs.  But there is no circumstance I will ever encounter that will be improved if I pick up a drink.

I'm status quo-ing along with my eating - no bingeing, and making better choices.  If I can acquire continued sobriety for a day at a time, I KNOW I can find peace and sanity with food as well.  It may be  trickier in some ways, but the basic principles apply.

I can never give back to AA all that I've been given.  The most important thing is for me to stay sober and help others achieve sobriety.  Beyond that, anything is possible and things work out as they are supposed to.

24 comments:

  1. The input from those precious souls who will say the right thing at the right time is priceless. Each day is a blessing. Here's to the next 20 years!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Happy Anniversary!

    I do believe that you're right, you know; the principles are the same. Keep sharing them with us

    I'm a firm believer in not re-inventing the wheel. NO need for me to figure out thru trial and error, what you already know. So, spill forth, girlfriend--you're a trail blazer.

    Deb

    ReplyDelete
  3. Kudos to you! Reading about those 20 years makes me all the more confident that you can apply those principles and find that peace with food.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Happy Birthday, Leslie! Twenty years is fantastic - and to think you did it one day at a time. That's a lot of days to add up to 20 years!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Good for you! You are the conquerer and stronger for doing so! You can do hard things!!!

    ~Margene

    ReplyDelete
  6. Happy Anniversary and thank you so much for sharing it with us! BTW, I think this is proof than you CAN do what seems impossible...

    ReplyDelete
  7. Warm congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Wow-that is HUGE! Congrats Leslie - "You've Come A Long Way Baby!"

    ReplyDelete
  9. Happy anniversary, and congratulations! Here's to the next 20 ♥

    ReplyDelete
  10. 20 years--it just shows what a strong person you are.

    :-) Marion

    ReplyDelete
  11. Wow Leslie, I have the utmost admiration and respect for this accomplishment. I cannot imagine how difficult this must have been. Congratulations on an amazing anniversary.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I teared up reading this Leslie. That's so amazing. I'm a child of an alcoholic and what you did for you and how that impacted your children just overwhelms me. Congratulations.

    Jodie

    ReplyDelete
  13. Happy Soberversary! That is AWESOME!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Be blessed! That is worthy of major celebration! Congrats.

    ReplyDelete
  15. How wonderful for you, congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
  16. wow great for you girl :) what a turn around and you're so inspiring to many! xo so glad i came across your blog!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Congratulations Leslie! That is wonderful. You are giving back by having this blog and sharing your amazing insights with all of your readers.

    ReplyDelete
  18. What an awesome achievement. You are much stronger than you give yourself credit for.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I'm just catching up on blog-reading this weekend ... I hope the coming year brings you insight, peace and continued sobriety.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Happy Anniversary! I'm glad you never had to hit rock bottom so you had a bit easier climb back up. You should be very proud of all you have overcome and accomplished. Congratulations!

    ReplyDelete
  21. What a wonderful anniversary! Good for you for being so strong!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Wow!! Congratulations on such a wonderful milestone. It's funny...you wrote that AA doesn't promise "a charmed life, abundant wealth, new cars, jump started careers, healthy happy relationships..." and I know that weight loss doesn't promise those things either, but on some level, that's what it appears the "diet industry" does promise (even if not with those words). There's no glamor associated with quitting alcohol, but it sure is associated with being thin!

    ReplyDelete