I have been outing myself more and more. I hope I am not going against the AA traditions, but I am feeling like what is the point of being in recovery if no one knows and I can't share it and hopefully help someone else. So here and there I have just been disclosing more about being sober and my recovery. In talking to few people, I have realized that I tend to be more bothered by being the one not drinking than the people around me. People just don't seem to care as much as I think they do. Strangely enough, we are the one who still carry all the shame associated with alcoholism.
I know there is stigma still surrounding alcoholism and addiction. I know some people still believe that it is a lack of self control and no moral standards that cause our addictions. But you know what, that is just not true, you know it and I know it! If I could have willed it away I would have! And today, I'd rather people say, oh there is that boring girl who doesn't drink anymore, than oh there is that drunk girl again, wonder what fiasco she will cause tonight! And, you know, really, what other people think of me is none of my business, because if it is not this, then there will be something else they will find to talk about. I am no better or worse than others!
Acceptance is the key here. We are all exactly how we are supposed to be. We are all where we are supposed to be. We all have issues to deal with. I am an alcoholic. That doesn't make me a bad person. It just makes ME.
I wish I felt this way in early sobriety, maybe I wouldn't have done so much research, and questioned it so much: am I? am I not? Who cares, really. I knew the answer long before my last drink. And if getting sober seemed like an amazing thing to do, like running a marathon or climbing a mountain, maybe I would have gotten to it sooner! But getting sober seemed shameful! Why?
The point is that sobriety should not be shameful! We who find sobriety have worked our arses off and continue to do so to stay sober! That is a lot of work and perseverance! Getting sober IS amazing and for me the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. If everyone out there understood how horribly difficult it is to deal with this cunning and baffling disease of addiction, they too would be proud! And maybe the people still struggling with their addiction would find it easier to raise above and get sober! And then you can run a marathon or climb a mountain too!
We should be proud! I AM proud!
YOU. Should. Be. Proud!