Alcohol: My hero, then nemesis, then hero again

I would have to say that it's a “what” rather than a “who” that has had the most profound impact on my life: alcohol.

In adolescence, I was a lost soul until I found the magic elixir of alcohol. I went from awkward, insecure and depressed, to clever, witty and brave with just a few drinks. I caught on quickly to the fine art of heavy drinking and soon had myself securely established in a peer group of tough kids that made me feel invincible. Alcohol was my hero.

But there came a point where my hero started to turn on me. The negative consequences from my drinking were piling up, yet alcohol kept promising me that it would be better during the next drunk, that the “good times” would come back. But it was lying. And by the time I caught on to its lies, it was too late: I was hooked. I got so I couldn't function without it, yet I couldn't function with it either. In desperation I checked myself into a treatment center in 1987, and have enjoyed the innumerable benefits of a strong recovery support system since then.

Oddly enough, as I sobered up, alcohol again became my hero, but in an entirely different way. I became grateful for alcohol's powerful influence on my life, because without that I would not have ended up with the wonderful life I've gotten in sobriety.

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— Laura L

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