I'm roughly 70 days clean/sober now.
"My name is Tim and i'm 10 days clean as i write this. I hope and pray somebody new will read this and will "get it" and not go thru what i had to. I was introduced to the program in late 1984 at the age of 18. After getting in trouble with the law i was forced into treatment. After treatment i was sent to a 1/2 way house. While there my sentencing came up and i was facing 40 years in Waupun prison. I got 90 days county time and 5 years probation. Basically i was scared straight at the time. I finished my aftercare and was on my way, or so i thought. I didn't realize it at the time but i was staying clean for all the wrong reasons and i paid for it. The 1st 5 years i stayed clean to avoid prison. Then to keep my family happy. Then not to disappoint all the friends i'd made in the program. Notice something missing there? I wasn't clean for me. I was clean for everyone around me. I very slowly drifted away from the program and meetings. I finally got to the point where i had convinced myself that i didn't have a problem with drugs or alcohol. I blamed it on being young, "Everyone i knew was doing the same thing, so how can it be a problem?" I finally quit going altogether. I didn't use right away, but most of the behavior and attitudes came back swiftly. I would use/drink a little and then stop and tell myself, "See, i can do this." Then, in 2002 i had the opportunity of a lifetime dropped into my lap. I was offered my very own business for very little investment. I thought i was set. Well, money, toys, material stuff, it wasn't making me "happy". I hid it well because i didn't want to admit i was wrong. The more i denied it, and God, the worse i was feeling. The worse i felt the heavier i used/drank. In 2007 i shut the doors on my business, friends, family and life. I pretty much stayed at home and progressively got more loaded as time went by. In June of 2009 i had to go a wedding for a niece of mine in another state. I had to drive my 75 year old mother there and back. I couldn't use/drink for 4 days. My niece and her mother (my sister) are born again christians so the wedding wasn't the party fest many weddings are. The whole weekend i was smiling and laughing on the outside, but inside i was like "How dare all you people be happy! I'm not, so you should be just as miserable as i am!" Also, the whole weekend i was feeling something well up inside me, a strange and uncomfortable feeling that kept growing and growing. By the time i got home i was a mess. I got up June 8th, 2009 and went to work. Hadn't really slept in 4-5 days. About 11 A.M. i told the boss i had to go, i wasn't feeling well. By the time i got home i was in complete breakdown mode (spiritual awakening). Hyperventilating, crying uncontrollably, my will had finally been totally broken. You know what that feeling welling up inside me was? GOD! As much as i had tried to deny him, push him away, ignore him, he wouldn't leave. He simply let me do my thing until i hit bottom so hard i simply couldn't function on the most basic level. When that happened he simply said to me. "You're ready now. No more pain, no more thoughts of just ending it, you have the tools so use them. Oh, and i love you, even if you hate yourself." As i sat in my chair crying and trying to breathe i made a life changing decision. Instead if picking up a beer or drugs, i picked up the phone. That phone was so heavy i didn't think i could do it. I had 2 numbers in my phone for people i knew were in the program. The man i called was there in about 15 minutes. We sat and talked it out and i've been to a meeting everyday since and have no plans on slowing down. The Big Book calls this disease cunning. This is NO LIE!!! It sat and waited patiently for me to take my will back and then pounced. It tried everything it could to kill me, make me miserable, keep me alone. An addict/alcoholics worst enemy is him/herself. This is no joke and not cliche. It's FACT! Thanks for taking the time to read this. I hope you all got something out of it.