For some reason, I always feel the need to explain myself. Apparently people have a preconceived notion of what an alcoholic is, and I don't fit into that picture. I, myself, had the same idea which is why I stayed in denial for so long about my condition. I am what would be considered a high-functioning alcoholic. I've attached a link for anybody who cares to read further about it. The key phrase that sticks with me about my particular form of alcoholism (and I'm sure I've written this before) is "The story of high functioning alcoholism is rarely told because it is not one of obvious tragedy but of silent suffering".
The feeling of being misunderstood about this thing that is such a huge part of my life is disconcerting but something I'm learning to deal with. I am understanding that people don't understand. I am beginning to grasp the fact that my condition doesn't need to be appreciated, even by those that are closest to me. Somehow, it still makes me feel like a freak. Going to meetings and finding a familiarity with others is a big relief. It is in the presence of those who've suffered similarly that I can find true support.
The true redemption of my life and my soul has come from honesty. Stepping out of the darkness of deceit into the light of truth has set me free. I can't over-emphasize this fact. While I may have put on a really good face while in the midst of my suffering, it was all so ugly and untruthful. Now that I'm facing my truth, why would I be surprised that nobody saw it? Wasn't that the goal...to keep it all hidden away? I guess I'm a better actor than I gave myself credit for. Frightening thought. So, any uneasiness I face because people don't believe I'm an alcoholic is my own doing. Such an odd place to be sitting. It is almost as if people would rather believe the lie. Epiphany going on in my head as I type this. They aren't comfortable with the fact that there would be anything "wrong" with me. It is way easier (and much less work) to simply pretend that everything is ok. I lived there for many years. Just pretend you're ok. Keep that beast in chains and under control and nobody will know he's there. It is exhausting just thinking about it.
I know there are people out there that have probably spilled more than I drank, but the fact remains that it had taken me hostage and I became powerless against it. By definition, that is an alcoholic. I don't want to be one. Every time I try to convince myself that I'm not one is when I am letting the enemy temp me to drink. He doesn't fight fair. He messes with my head. It is under God's protection that I am completely safe. As soon as I step out of that protection and let my guard down, a fiery dart will pierce my flesh and I become weak. Some days, the victory is simply not taking a drink and other days are filled with bounding steps towards freedom. That is why there is so much emphasis on "one day at a time". I do what I can do today and that is all.
I can control the small things. I can pray. I can meditate. I can go to meetings. I can read scripture. I can pray some more. The rest is left up to God. He will never leave me or forsake me. He will protect me from the evil powers of this world. I can rest assured of that. I will face this day knowing I am saved and free and loved.