Twenty-five years ago at about this time of night, I was buying the last six pack of beer I would ever drink. I sat until about midnight drinking alone at the kitchen table, my family already asleep. I went to bed, having no idea that those beers would be my last.
On July 24, 1984, I began the adventure of a lifetime, when I called Alcoholics Anonymous. I thank God for His loving intervention. For His loving hand in all the days of my life.
My sponsor and her husband arrived this afternoon. They will spend the weekend with me, which is lovely. I was touched that they drove all day to get here.
At about noon today, I picked up the phone to call my old friend Big Ed. I wanted to tell him that I was celebrating 25 years of sobriety. For some reason, this has just been a matter of fact thing until I made that phone call, and then I ended up realizing what I was saying. Twenty-five years of continuous sobriety! How incredibly awesome. What a blessing. How kind God is, because I could have "worked" steps until kingdom come, and never have "earned" one second of the life I have today. Ed and I talked about all the times. About our friendship. About all the years. About the cars, the husbands, the apartments. The years. Of a loving friendship. In Alcoholics Anonymous.
At lunch, I drove to the mall to buy something that was on sale... but I didn't find it. So I quickly walked around jewelry stores until I found just the thing I have wanted since I was 13 years old. A pair of ruby stud earrings. And when I found them, the sales clerk asked me if they were for a birthday or a special occasion. I looked at her and decided to tell her what they were for. But first my eyes misted up and I couldn't speak. She said "oh, there is so much sadness," I told her "No! It is so much happiness!" I told her that I am celebrating 25 years of sobriety in Alcoholics Anonymous and this is my gift to myself. She smiled and said that deserved a big high five - so there we were, two middle aged women in the mall at lunch time, high fiving my sobriety. Her mom is also sober. It was wonderful that she understood what I was celebrating. Someone mentioned later that rubies are the July birthstone... maybe that is more truly my birthstone than the one for my natal birthday...
My birthday is always humbling. This one might be a little bit more so. But it is such a joy.
I will speak at the 6:30 a.m. meeting tomorrow, and then will celebrate again at a 7:30 p.m. meeting across town. What a joy.
Thank you bloggers for allowing me to join you in our journey. You can see that for me it isn't always sunshine and puppies, but it is always real. And no matter what happens, God is with me, and I am OK.
To repeat what they told me at my first meeting:
I never have to drink again, if I don't want to.
I don't want to today, and haven't for a very long time. I am so grateful for this and for the people who join me as we trudge the road of happy destiny.
May God Bless You and Keep You. Lots of Love from Mary Christine.