Early in my sobriety I began to realize that God was the things, or in or behind the things, or had created the things, that I’d loved my whole life. Bach cantatas, all flowers, all birds. The man or woman who suffered and who didn’t complain and who tried to help the next person. Oh—that’s God. The blue heron. The trees that changed color in fall . . .
When I first stopped drinking, I was unaware that it could be possible to enjoy things without alcohol or drugs. The alcohol was the centerpiece of any event I attended, and procuring it or making sure it was available was the first order of business. How wonderful to know that my full sensory enjoyment of simple things has magnified so much more than anything I thought was fun in my blurry, boozy haze of pseudo fun.
Having a problem with alcohol doesn’t always mean that your life crumbles into nothingness. It can look incredibly high functioning too. It can paint its nails and piece together super fun outfits, get a promotion or be a busy mom driving her kids to a plethora of after school activities. Alcohol can be all those things and still be an issue.
I was a high bottom drunk. In my alcoholic, comparison-based mind in the early days, I perceived that as underachieving as an alcoholic. I had no DUIs, no rehab stories, no arrests… I was a high bottom drunk. But therein lies the key word – Drunk. Someone early on told me he was a high bottom too, but “just as sick as that guy living under the bridge.”
When most people talk about seeking spirituality, they are talking about becoming more spiritual or seeking practices that increase their spirituality. My quest is much more basic than that. I am wondering: What does spirituality mean? What is the definition of spirituality?
Even though I started drinking alcoholically from my very first drink about age 14-ish, I really didn’t see it as a problem at the time – nor for a long time thereafter. It seemed like fun for most of the decades that I was progressing and experimenting with drugs too. But looking back, from the get-go it was always about more, next, when, where, how… I had found a simple way to instantly feeling funnier, prettier, cooler, more alive, more at ease … Many years later, I gravitated toward the other soccer moms that thought it was a fine idea to put wine in the water cups and go out for margaritas before or after the kids’ game (not during, at least.)
Right here and right now in this present and precious moment, I sense and allow the powerful awareness of Universal Intelligence to permeate my cells. I am one with this Infinite Intelligence. It infuses me with a calm sense of awareness and acceptance as I acknowledge and welcome each and every one of my experiences.
A lot of adults in many cultures in this world have not gone for any extended period of time without alcohol since their teenage years and for many this is a happy crutch, able to control with ease and drink for pleasure. For others who are heavy drinkers or binge drinkers, unhealthy amounts are consumed in short periods of time but stopped to resume daily life and business until the next drinking session begins. There are alcoholics who have no off button when it comes to drinking and often end up in complete oblivion or black out on a regular basis, people that have lost control over their drinking. Unless, like me, who has complete abstinence from alcohol, chances are every person falls into one of those categories.