I was probably going to die, but that honestly didn’t bother me too much.
When I first entered rehab, I was more afraid of spending the rest of my life being bored than I was afraid of dying. I knew I couldn’t live like that anymore, my health was really deteriorating, but I was terrified of losing the one thing that made me feel alive.
I see now that it was cyclical. The drugs were really just a coping mechanism that pushed me back and forth between bliss and torment. It is a stressful way to live your life. Little did I know kind of amazing experiences sobriety was going to afford me.
I could go on and on about how my life is better now that I don’t drink or get high. Instead of rambling I’ve decided to compile a list for any of those who may be on the fence about getting sober or not.
1 – I Sleep Like A Baby
Easily one of the best parts about being sober.
I have a very distinct memory of sitting at the end of my bed every night, just sitting there because the anxiety and angst in my life made it impossible for me to relax. If I was lucky enough to fall asleep, my sleep would be interrupted by nightmares and cold sweats. Not to mention, as soon as I woke up my very first thought would be about how to get my next fix. It was instantaneous.
If you are stuck in addiction, I’m sure that you are craving good sleep. Addiction is exhausting.
Once you get sober, you will see how much energy is being spent chasing drugs and alcohol and how much better life feels when your mind and body is rested. It’s a whole new world.
2 – Earning And Protecting Trust
It’s so much easier when people trust you. There’s no other way to put it.
There is no one looking over my shoulder. People ask me for favors, and they know that I will come through. I am there for my family, I am there for my friends.
There’s little things that only I notice. For instance, my friends don’t take all their valuables with them if they leave me in the car alone when they run into a gas station.
When people trust you, there is freedom and respect and it makes me feel really good. To know that I am a man that people can depend on and in return I have people in my life that I depend on. It’s great!
3 – Discovering Serenity
I still don’t know exactly what serenity is, but I can tell you when I see it and feel it.
Serenity is fleeting. In the hustle and bustle in life, it’s not realistic to be in a blissful state of euphoria 24 hours of the day. Everyone has to deal with traffic, relationships, tragedy and all the pain that comes along with being a human.
None the less, when I am in the right frame of mind, I will get this overwhelming feeling of peace and serenity. Every once in a while things become clear and I realize what is actually important in life. My family, sharing time with the ones I love, being of service to humanity and to the planet. Those moments are really priceless because they bring everything else into perspective.
When I go running at night under a moonlit sky, when I sit on the beach, when I sit around a fire with the people that mean the most to me. That’s the real shit, those are the moments that stick with me and that will hopefully be in the forefront of my mind when I am on my death bed. That’s the high I chase now.
4 – Finding My Spirituality
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
– Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
I feel bad for people who have no concept of spirituality, because I used to be afraid of it. I used to think that spiritual people were weak. It took me some time and some real soul searching to understand what spirituality actually meant.
For me, having spirituality simply means being connected. Everything in this Universe is connected, and I find that trying to tap into that flow of energy gets me in lined with the happenings around me.
Everyone wants this. Everyone wants to feel like a participant in life. Everyone wants to feel connected to something that is bigger than you or I. When I discovered this, and when I let it really sink in, that was when the burden of things I can not control lost their power over me.
That was really when I become free.
5 – Learning The Value Of Relationships
When I got sober, I slowly stopped fearing people.
On the contrary, I started to appreciate people. Instead of judging people I started to look for ways to relate to them. We are all much more alike than we are different.
This enabled me to be able to form new relationships, to cherish the relationships I already had, and to learn to love and appreciate everyone for their uniqueness.
I will never be the most outgoing person, and I will always enjoy my alone time. However, getting sober gave me a new found respect for the value of people and what I can learn from others. Everyone has a story to tell, and if I keep my mind open, I find that I am not as different as I thought I was.
6 – Perspective Is Reality
Change in perspective is everything.
Sobriety and active recovery have taught me that every situation can be looked at from a lot of different angles. I have learned to see the blessings and opportunity in every situation.
Granted I am not perfect at this. Every day things happen that I find disturbing and upsetting, but once I realized that I can’t control anything outside of my own actions, my perspective and view on life changed as well.
I know now that I can choose to be happy, or I can choose to be sad. My feelings are my responsibility, and no one is in charge of my happiness but me. Good, bad or indifferent, I see that there is always something to be grateful for.
7 – All You Need Is Love
Here I am getting all sappy again.
Getting sober opened my heart. Generally speaking, all addicts are guarded. We know that we can’t be trusted, so that must mean that no one can be trusted. It makes sense… sort of.
Allowing yourself to be loved means making yourself vulnerable. Many times, people do things that hurt us, but sobriety taught me that that’s okay. It is better to be loved and vulnerable than it is to be alone and protected. There really is nothing sadder than a person who is afraid to be loved.
Find Out For Yourself
The hope is that if there is anyone reading this who is struggling with addiction, you can be rest assured that sobriety is worth it.
It’s okay to be afraid or to be weary of putting the bottle down. But I promise you, WE promise you, that it will be worth it. You will discover things about yourself that you didn’t know. You will find your inner strength and your inner peace and life will be much easier.
No one can make you get sober, but we will help you in any way we can. If you need help, call us. We are here for you, because we have been there before.
Please note this is just the opinion of the author. If you have anything to add, please leave them in the comments section below 🙂