What Sobriety Is For Me
In the last three meetings I attended, I have heard a recurring theme. No fewer than 5 people who have shared in my meetings ended with “this is what sobriety is for me.” The subject matter they talked about varied: some spoke about their rewarding profession, some about the joy of spending time with their children, some about their extensive travel. But no matter what positive thing that was going on, they cited sobriety as the reason they have such blessings in their lives.
Because the message was reinforced so many times for me in such a short period of time, I analyzed my reaction a little more closely, and I realized that I was a tiny bit skeptical to fully embrace this line of reasoning. It seemed a little extreme. I’m sure in some cases you wouldn’t hold a job, or have your children, etc., but in just as many cases you can be in active addiction and still have all of those things, so the logic didn’t flow for me.
And then, yesterday, I was interviewed by a professional in the field of psychology, and asked the question, “how has life improved in the past 176 days?” Through my re-telling of the many blessings I have gained (or re-gained) in the past almost 6 months, I stumbled across the answer to my unspoken question “why does sobriety get the credit for all the blessings?” Because the greatest blessing I have received in sobriety is gratitude. Yes, I have the same children now as I had in active addiction. I have the same husband, the same extended family, the same friends, the same home. The difference is that I can now see, with eyes clearer than, I believe, even someone who has never been an addict, how incredibly fortunate I am. I realize with an intensity I have never before felt how blessed I am to have so much in my life. Small things, such as waking up in the morning, after having had a restful night’s sleep, take on a meaning deeper than the average person.
All of that gratitude is a direct result of sobriety. And that is only the beginning of what sobriety is for me…