My 9 year old daughter wrote this poem in school in May. I love it. I shared it with someone who is also a recovering alcoholic and a real, honest-to-god published poet and I told him how much I liked the last line. He said, “I agree…maybe the last line is about wine…”. Wow. Wow.
I found out yesterday that one of my closest friends from high school has breast cancer. I had three really close friends in school and she is the second one from that group to have this rotten disease. She has two small children, a great career, happy marriage…. so much to live for. It made me think about my disease and maybe there is a difference amongst diseases. My initial feeling was almost one of guilt. Lots of sadness but maybe a tinge of happiness that my disease seems easier to recover from (from my point of view only). She didn’t choose cancer. This is probably a newly sober thing to say but I often feel that I played an active role in my addiction and disease. I chose to have another glass….and another…..and another. Maybe if I’d made better choices, I would have ended up where I am today. Maybe alcoholism wouldn’t have chosen me. I realize that no one chooses cancer. Just like no one chooses alcoholism. But I was definitely an active participant that lead me down the road to alcholism. So I felt guilty. I felt guilty for the sympathy I give myself and that I often feel I’m owed. My recovery won’t involve chemo, radiation, drugs, true physical pain. My life might have been at risk at times while drinking but I never felt like it would kill me.
I’m not sure where I’m going with this post…. maybe I’m feeling that at almost 4 months sobriety, this is easy. That I belong in some group of survivors. Maybe I’m realizing that lots of people have it waaaay worse than I do. I’m happy she chose to tell me and I’m happy that I’m making better choices. Let’s just leave it at that…sadness and happiness mixed together.