Oct 16: It’s My Choice

It’s My Choice

When it came to the *choice* of topic for today, the whole cloud of themes, thoughts, feelings, and phrases from the Big Book started swarming in my head, and I could not make a decision! They all seemed equally pertinent and important. I often struggle with making choices, and waste my time running backwards and forwards in my head, until the opportunity is missed altogether.

I drank for 20 years – and, looking back, it feels like the choice was made for me. I am an alcoholic, and I was enslaved, imprisoned, incapacitated by alcohol. Many times did I feel desperate because my drinking took me to really dark places, and I was hurting people around me, including my husband, my parents, who were devastated, my two lovely children… However, even if I could stop for a short while, I would inevitably go back to drinking – I couldn’t imagine life without alcohol. I didn’t know it was possible. I didn’t know there was a choice.

Today I *choose* to stay away from the first swig of booze. It is so liberating! The word “choice” for me is full of hope. I know – and I have learnt it the hard way – that nothing will get better or easier, if I pick up a drink. Now, that I am sober, I have a clear head, and it is a beautiful gift! No matter how imperfect I am, indecisive, inefficient, irritable, forgetful, still selfish, often confused, I know that today I can choose to make progress, to learn, and to grow.

I have been sober for 1 year and 5 months, and I am still learning to live. It is hard at times, my reactions are often out of proportion, and I struggle badly with planning and fitting everything in. I agonise over making *choices*, deciding what is important and what isn’t in everyday life.

However, I have acquired faith today. It is indeed a miracle. Today I believe that, if I stay sober and work the programme, if I try to be honest, open-minded and helpful, if I try to listen and not to rush, if I pray and don’t jump to conclusions, then gradually everything will sort itself out. The right decisions will become evident. The solutions will be apparent. The *choices* be “made for me”, in such a way that I can be useful and self-realised.

Today, I can choose to pause, ‘when agitated or doubtful’, and start my day afresh… Sadly, I don’t do it as often as I should… More often than not, I choose not to beat myself up about it, and I mumble as a mantra “it’s progress not perfection”. Despite all my shortcomings, I choose to be happy today. There is a long ‘road of happy destiny’ lying ahead of me.