By the Grace of God

Around this time of the year I like to make a post about the happenings and goings of my life. By the grace of God I reached three years of sobriety on Independence Day, 2011 and for that I’m eternally grateful. I of all people understand that what I have is a gift, a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of my spiritual condition. Three years ago I would have never imagined even sayingwords like this, but today I hold these words close to my heart and mind. I tried for two years to get sober with no luck. I thought that I was a man constitutionally incapable of being honest with myself; I thought I was doomed, I had nearly given up.

During these two years I tried every trick in the book to live a normal life. I tried to only use a couple weeks a month, I tried to only drink on the weekends, I left college because people partied too hard there, I didn’t drink hard liquor, I only used drugs, I only drank, and the list goes on and on. Every experiment ended with the same result: complete and utter addiction. At my final bottom I was at a point of incomprehensible demoralization with no options left other than dying, going to jail, or changing my entire thought process to try a different way of living.

The amount of ego that I had built up throughout the years of financial success finally had been broken down entirely and there were no options left. My way of life simply was not working, and I had to finally take the suggestions given to me. For a man that thought praying, God and everything associated to it was for inferior people – taking a chance to try this was huge for me. I still remember the first prayer and the amount of resistance I had with it making it: “To whomever is up there, God, if anyone is listening, will you help keep me sober today.”

From that day I never took another drink or drug again. Over time, the prayers evolved from a hesitant practice to a close relationship that I actually believed was keeping me sober. For me to stay sober entirely from drugs and alcohol for a week, a month, three months was entirely impossible by myself. I only changed one thing in my attempt at sobriety – prayer. It became completely apparent and real to me that a Higher Power was taking care of me. I still keep this concept fresh in my head – not a day goes by that I don’t ask God to help keep me sober and thank him at night. I completely believe that He did for me what I could not do for myself.

The absolute most important part in me staying sober and living a happy life is maintaining and strengthening this connection with God through prayer; by asking for help and thanking him for it. Although I’m not always pleased with what life gives me and I still feel the same pains as everyone else, I keep my trust entirely in God and have faith that he will take care of me. I am truly grateful for every day that I get to wake up on this earth because during my time in sobriety and working with other alcoholics, I’ve seen so many go that didn’t get the chance that I did. For them, I stay sober and try to pass on what has been so freely given to me.

Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m still an arrogant asshole – but do not mistake that for ingratitude for what I’ve been blessed with. I’ve fought my way up from the depths of a living hell and rebuilt what I have now – what can I say, it’s hard not to stunt. Everything that I have now: the tools to get through the rough times, loving relationships with people that actually care, material success, and more that I cannot even begin to list has been given to by God – I’ve just put in the footwork to get it. I’ve been on both sides of the street, and I can honestly say that my focus, emotional condition, spirituality and overall health has been at an all time high being sober. For anyone reading this blog with problems or even potential problems – there is light at the end of the tunnel. I’m a prime example of hard work and sobriety working out.