A Few Simple Rules

A Slave to Drugs No More
June 9, 2017
My Story of 39 Years of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
June 15, 2017

Hi my name is Alex and I am a recovered alcoholic. My sobriety date is 01/10/2016 and I was 18 years old at the time. I was born and raised in Winston Salem, North Carolina into a normal functioning family. My addiction started when I was 13 years old, and it all started with a half-gallon of vodka. I always seemed to feel misplaced in my life, seeking acceptance from everyone. I felt like someone walking through the desert for weeks, trying to find a cold glass of water. When I was 13, and took my first sip of alcohol, I finally found my cold glass of water. I not only seemed to care less about acceptance from others, but felt a strong flash of acceptance for myself. That same night, something strange seemed to happen. I drank far, far, far more than I planned. That night, my body seemed to crave more, and more, until the point where I blacked out. I woke up the next morning, with friends telling me that I dug my teeth into one of them attempting to bite them, that I tried punching my brother and that I threw up everywhere. I remember telling myself that I probably should not drink again, until a thought crossed my mind. It blocked out all other thoughts, and that was that I could drink enough to NOT blackout. I remember drinking again the next night, and again, drinking far more than I planned.

By 14 years old, I was buying coke from older peers that I knew from school. I would buy a few grams of coke on a school night, planning for it to last me the entire week. Again, something very abnormal happened. I snorted a line of coke, and again I physically craved more. By the next morning, it was all gone. I would fall asleep at school, and eventually skip school because I could not stay awake due to being on a coke binge the previous night. While I was a sophomore in high school, I was fighting to stay sober on my own willpower. Something strange started to happen, I became restless. I could not sleep at night. My mind would race and race. I became irritable. The smallest things would start to piss me off. I would hear my family or friends talking and it would make my skin crawl. Then, I became very discontent. I was not happy anymore. All things in life that once made me happy began to lose their glow. I was walking through the desert for weeks, searching for my cold glass of water. All of a sudden, a thought crossed my mind. That thought told me, “Alex, you know you have been doing well. You know you haven’t been using coke and drinking, it might be time to relax.” Instead of remembering all of the pain and suffering that I put myself, and my family through, that thought was followed by another. “You know what? You’re right. You do deserve to have a drink”. That night, I drank, and I snorted coke again for the first time in one month. I found my cold glass of water. Eventually, my story leads to more drinking, more coke, and eventually heroin in my life.

I was arrested for felony possession of heroin on 10/27/15. I was bonded out on Halloween 2015, and told I was coming to The Watershed. My first visit to The Watershed was November 1st, 2015. I spent 48 days here. I remember I got my first sponsor. I read with him once and I never called him back again. What we read, basically told me that I was going to use drugs, and drink until I died. That book told me that I was going to die an alcoholic. I left and went home after that. The first night I was home, I drank again. The next night, I was locked behind my door snorting heroin and coke. It took 3 weeks until I noticed something. That I have an obsession of the mind, that leads me to that first drink, time, and time, and time, and time, and time, and time, and time again. I realized that once I put something into my body, I physically crave more and there is not stop for me.

There was something that crossed my mind; I remember I was on my knees crying, right after praying to God. The thought that crossed my mind, was a word that I read with my sponsor when I was at The Watershed. And that book said that I would drink and I would use drugs until I die. You always here “Don’t pick up no matter what”; well that book told me that I was going to pick up no matter what. There was one word that I remembered, and that word was “UNLESS”. That book said that I would not stop drinking and using drugs, unless I was to follow a few simple rules. I packed my belongings, and I drove my car from North Carolina to Florida at The Watershed on January 10th 2016, and I have been sober ever since. When I got The Watershed, I found another sponsor. I noticed the world “unless” again, and again. I was required to follow a few simple rules, and I did.

When I say that I am a “recovered” alcoholic that does not mean that I am cured of alcoholism. I will never be cured. I only recovered from an obsession of the mind that leads me to the first drink time, and time again. I will never be cured. Once I put a substance into my body, no matter how long I have been sober, I will not stop. But as long as I continue to share this message, and keep God by my side, I will always recoil from a drink or a drug as if from a hot flame. Today I can live happy, joyous and free of the misery of alcoholism and addiction. Today, I can be the family member and the man that I am supposed to be. Today, I can build my life, and go to sleep happy with my place in this world. Thanks to all of these programs, I am a recovered alcoholic.

Alex W.