For me, the saying that someone is ‘stuck between a rock and a hard place’ sums up perfectly my addiction to alcohol because I couldn't live with it and couldn't ever imagine a life without it. Needless to say, it’s not a great place to be. I met with a new sponsee today, she has 35 days sober and she's inthat place. The fog is beginning to lift and she's very nervous, anxious and desperate.
It was our first real chance to get to know each other as we just met 3 days ago. It’s truly amazing how the program of Alcoholics Anonymous works, that by one alcoholic talking to another about how it was for us when we were drinking, what happened and what it's like now, - we have the ability to make a connection. By sharing our story we are letting them know that if we can get sober there’s no reason why they can’t either.
We talked about our drinking histories - she started very late in life and I started very early. We talked about how each of us drank -she was a maintenance drinker, drinking every day and I was a binge drinker - holding off for a few days at a time until my body screamed for alcohol. There were other differences too, she has grown up children who have left home and I have an eight year old son who is very much in my face on a daily basis. None of that mattered though because we found that even though there’s a 2o year age difference, when it comes to our disease – there really is no difference.
For both of us, we got to a place where we were physically unable to stop drinking once we had started. We had both tried at many different times to control our drinking, only to get to a place of complete and incomprehensible despair. It was obvious when we were done talking that our disease isn’t choosy – it wants the same thing for all alcoholics and addicts and that is death - the slower and more painful, the better.
I didn’t tell her that it’s probably a good thing that she has got to this place. Because for me at least, the more desperate I was, the more willing I became to try anything to stay sober – even AA. Sometimes, being stuck between a rock and a hard place can be right where we need to be in order to get us started on the journey of recovery.