This former patient had everything going for her. She had completed treatment for alcoholism and took action with her aftercare plan. So, she was doing the right things to remain sober. Guess what happened next? This patient’s life got better and better. From not working to working a full-time job. Moreover, she developed close relationships with her family and friends. A recent article discusses how millennials view getting drunk as pathetic and that they prefer to create positive memories. This recovering alcoholic had now created this sort of life for herself. What a change!
Soon thereafter, this sober female continued to maintain a life full of joy and happiness because she kept her sobriety number one! Every now and then I would hear updates on how she was doing. I had the immense pleasure to see her go from utter despair to pure sober joy. That is why I enjoy helping people. Many folks ask me isn’t your job stressful and challenging. I always respond, “No Way, I love my job!” As counselors we do what we can to support a client and give them the tools to live sober. The reality is that it is up to the patient to make some changes and take action. As alcoholics are powerless over alcohol, I am powerless over people. But it sure is fun to see the ones who make progress.
As life got busier though she began to cut back on attending 12-step meetings. I hadn’t gotten an update in a while. Before long, I heard that she had relapsed because sobriety was no longer her priority. As a result, she had lost her job, her family worried and did not trust her any longer. She was now worse off than ever. This shows the power of this disease. It is sneaky and progressive. It waits and waits and when people let their guard down it attacks and destroys the human body, mind and spirit. But, she did not give up. That’s the thing with alcoholism, as long as the person is not dead they have a chance to recoup. She was one of the fortunate ones.
Now, with the encouragement of those who had helped her gain success she got back on the right track. Relapse does not have to be the end all but it easily can set a person back in a heartbeat. That is why people in recovery need to maintain continued abstinence. So, it is critical to live one day at a time and keep sobriety as your number one priority each day.