If you're going to better, you can't be afraid. Fear will weaken you right out of the gate and you will need all of your strength to defeat such a strong adversary as alcohol addiction. I spent six years running from a better life because I was afraid of what I had to do to get there. Drinking was easy; drinking was safe; drinking was familiar. If nobody liked me when I was drunk, what did I care. There was no reasoning with me. If I was going to stop it would have to be through divine intervention or much more likely profound tragedy. I had to go right to the brink of madness before I finally agreed to get help.
I was 38 years old when I "discovered" that I needed help. I'd lived life in the fast lane, until I eventually crashed…and crashed hard. This is not a metaphor; I was in a car crash that left me temporarily paralyzed from the neck, down. I couldn't do anything for myself; this meant I couldn't get alcohol.
For a long time, my car accident seemed like a huge tragedy; but as I started to heal (both from addiction and my accident injuries) I realized that something beyond my understanding was stopping me from totaling destroying myself. I start to connect the dots and ponder how nobody else was hurt in the accident; how I did not gain full mobility in the future until I had completed treatment and developed the strength to survive in recovery.
I was very scared to enter any alcohol detox centers because I feared the withdrawal symptoms. But everything turned out to be not nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be. I attribute this to the professional medical staff and on-site doctors that monitored me 24/7 throughout the withdrawal process. After I completed my alcohol detox I started the treatment phase of the recovery process at the same south Florida alcohol rehab where I detoxed. It was about four months later after I returned home from successfully completing my alcohol treatment that I took my first step and eventually learned to walk again.
I was inspired to write this now because June 8 is my first anniversary taking that first figurative step of entering an alcohol detox & rehab, that led to my taking the first literal step again and the ability to walk. To me they represent more than just healing muscle; they represent God's willingness to let me stand on my own two feet and walk toward a new life. I go to my meetings religiously twice a week and I remain incredibly committed to the process; but at the end of the day, my faith has become my ultimate weapon against ever relapsing.