That was the artwork on my whiteboard in my little cubicle a year ago. I thought it was hilarious. Now I am in an office sort of tucked away. I have a whiteboard in the outer office, but no one sees it. I will occasionally draw something, but no one notices, or they just don’t “get” my ridiculous sense of humor.
It’s been a long 6 days since I had that tooth pulled. I am still in pain, believe it or not. It is not, thank God, a dry socket. But it hurts. I am sick of the stitches in my mouth and I am desperately tired of a soft diet. I am however, grateful to not have that tooth in my mouth. It was such a problem for such a long time, and I invested thousands of dollars in trying to save it. It is now gone and I just have to figure out whether I want a partial or an implant. I think I am leaning toward implant. The only drawback is the tremendous sum of money it costs.
I am still marveling over the reaction to Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death. I agree, so sad. I agree, tragic. I agree, such a talent wasted. What I don’t get is why he is so different from all of these news stories – maybe one a month? An actor, a musician, a writer… dead of drug overdose. And all of the un-famous people who die every single day. Is it different because he had 23 years of sobriety at one point? Probably that’s it.
If anyone is surprised at that, they don’t have a full understanding of the addict and the addiction. Do we not say we are sober only for today? Yep. I don’t care how many years I have, I am sober today. I can’t stay sober on yesterday’s sobriety, and today’s sobriety won’t keep me sober tomorrow. I have always said there is the “sword of damocles” (my alcoholism) hanging over my head. Always. I just get used to it being there, but I better never forget, or think it has somehow turned into a nerf sword that can’t hurt me.
This is where a full knowledge of my utter powerlessness and surrender to a higher power comes in. In today’s culture, those are no longer palatable concepts and I believe we soft pedal them now. To our own peril.
God bless Philip Seymour Hoffman. I hope his suffering is over. Maybe it is good that his death is raising addiction to the 24 hour news cycle once more. I have become so cynical about modern “recovery” that I don’t have much hope that we will suddenly have a mass revelation of what recovery is or could be.
My own story is that I drank myself into a state so desperate that I became willing to listen. I knew I was screwed and had no more good ideas. I turned to AA and God and then did what worked. It seems counter-intuitive, but it worked. I gave up. I surrendered.
I sat in shabby rooms with terrible furniture, all surfaces yellow and sticky with cigarette residue, all air completed smoke filled. The rooms might contain a physician, a bank-robber, several bikers, a house-wife, a business-woman, a prostitute, a priest, various construction guys, and truckers. They were able to help me as no professionals in nice clothes and nice offices ever had. Because they weren’t there to help me – we were all in the process of survival together. We understood one another. We were all in the same boat.
It still works. And I thank God. I thank God for my own sobriety, several of my siblings kids’ sobriety, and my own daughter’s sobriety. All in AA. It does work.