A Long-Term Recovery PSA

Art by Harrison Fisher digitized from my 1907 copy of A Dream of Fair Women

"Why can't you have just one sip/bite/puff?"

Maybe I could today. And maybe I could again tomorrow. Then not again until next year. Then I'd think: Hey! I'm cured! I had just a few sips over the past couple of years! I'll just have a very small sip/bite/whatever. Wow! That tasted great and I really like this moderation thing!

And soon after, or maybe even a slow soon, like months later, I'd be back into it.

Thankfully this hasn't happened to me with drinking for almost 23 years, smoking for 18 years or bingeing on junk food for seven years and I intend to keep it that way. For me that means no experiments. No exceptions. It doesn't matter if it's a "special occasion," "just a toast" or "you'll hurt their feelings." Even a religious setting like a Seder or Communion doesn't change the above for me and countless others.

If this makes me a rigid freak I'm good with that.

"I know people who are in recovery and they handle it just fine."

No one knows what recovering people experience or struggle with in private! Alcoholism has a high recidivism rate. Let's work to lower that! Sobriety is a gift. By sharing these personal truths publicly I hope to help others cherish their path and not feel ashamed for not going astray.

Comments

  1. I'm so glad you continue to fight and win that fight! :)
    My father was an alcoholic and a smoker and unfortunately, I've lost him to soon to those addictions...
    Keep fighting the good fight!
    :)

    Paula

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    1. Oh Paula, I am sorry for your loss! Addiction is a nasty nasty thing. Thank you for your support!!!

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  2. Good for you, Averyl! You do what you need to do for yourself. ;)

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  3. It works for more than just addictive substances. I cannot leave stuff anywhere, but the place it's supposed to be. If I slip, I have a mountain of stuff that's not just mine, but everyone seems to think it's okay to help grow.
    If you can keep it up you should keep trucking Averyl! ;)

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    1. Interesting!

      As long as I stay in the present moment I'll keep on truckin'!

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  4. A very wise and effective approach! "If you are depressed, you are living in the past. If you are anxious, living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the moment." Lao Tzu

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  5. You are truly an inspiration, Averyl. Stay strong. I have lost several loved ones to substance addiction. They thought they could handle it on their own, and we family members didn't know how to help them.

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    1. Thank you, Lois. How sad and I'm sorry to hear about your losses! I agree with "cunning and baffling" when used to describe substance abuse. We can never let our guard down.

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  6. I quit smoking several years ago. I really don't remember how many! After spending several weeks with my daughter, and not smoking, because she really hates it, and doesn't like to see me doing it, it made sense for me to not take it up again when I returned home. It didn't bother me as much as I would think. From time to time, though, it is very tempting. But I dare not have that cigarette because I am afraid the addiction would come back full force. Those urges are becoming fewer and farther apart. I am very grateful that I could give up such a destructive habit!

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    1. Good for you, DeeDee! I had quit smoking a few times before the last time. Once I made it almost four years! All it took was that one drag to get me back. (And nice to see you commenting here!)

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    2. Very well said, Averyl! It's a hard path to walk, but it's the best path to success.

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