A hashtag stream on Twitter, named #Wagon31, aims at getting very public personalities to give up alcohol for the month of January. One of the directors at the office decided to give up drinking for the festive season, and has felt so clear-headed and energised as a result, he has prolonged that drive indefinitely. The First Child, who is one of my biggest supporters, also gave up drinking, a few months ago, essentially for a short period of time, but decided to stick at it. All around me, it seems that there are people with an incredible amount of self-control, and the desire to do good things for themselves, and those around them.
I could, of course, sit here, and regret the 18 years I had no such self-control – I could be ashamed of myself. That’s not a handy emotion though, but the regret I could use to make me stronger, to ensure my self-control when it comes to drink and drugs is unwavering.
And then there are the friends who faltered, and fell off the wagon, during December. My heart goes out to them – without judgement or criticism, because I have no right to judge them, and I know that they are their own biggest critics – they don’t need another one. After doing so well for a number of months, to fall off the wagon is disheartening, for them, and sad, for me, as their friend – I KNOW very personally the pain, and the shame they are feeling.
But here’s something else – each one of those friends has reached out, confessed their fall, and is doing something about it.
As recovering addicts, it’s not the destination of perfection – that is an unobtainable goal; it is rather, the journey of healing, and progression, and awareness, and self-betterment. Taking accountability for being human, and admitting your wrongs, and then taking the actions to repair the damage, earns my respect enormously.
To my fellow recovering addicts, who stumbled, and fell, this December – know that you are not judged, you are respected for doing something about it. I am proud to call you my friends. You get back on that wagon, and together, we’ll do this journey back to life.
© Dave Luis 2013. All Rights Reserved.