Saturday, February 21, 2009

Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears...

What is sad in a way, but really not so bad is the fact that I have no friends of my own anymore. Well, that's not entirely correct, I still talk to one of my oldest and best friends, just not all that often. Since I got sober I just don't have much in common with my own friends. In treatment they tell you that you'll have to change your people, places and things. And we all balk at that idea. "I'm not going to get rid of my friends!" we say. But the reality is we don't have to get rid of them. Eventually, if we are serious about recovery, the differences will win out.

So now my friends are my wife's friends. And that's good, because they don't drink much, and not around me at all. That's not to say that I can't be around someone drinking. My recovery is not based on anyone else's actions, but I don't put myself in those situations unless I have to. If we visit my mother-in-law it's a pretty safe bet that she will be drinking. But with her, and Crystal's friends, I don't have that history. My own friends I spent years drinking constantly with. We are all alcoholics, some just haven't admitted it yet.

Crystal hardly ever drank with me. When we got together I was just getting to the worst of my addiction. Watching me slowly kill myself made her hate alcohol. So now she might occassionally go out with some of the girls from work, and have a few drinks, but that is rare. And if she comes home with a buzz, it doesn't make me miss it at all. But I believe if I hung out with one of my old drinking buddies, and he was drinking, it would be a different story. I think I would miss it.

I have been sober for more than three years, and the Lord has relieved me of having cravings. I can truly say I don't have them. But one could be just around the corner if I let my guard down. So I pray for the Lord to keep them at bay. And remind myself that just one drink would be my destruction.

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