Rose Lockinger is a passionate member of the recovery community. A rebel who found her cause, she uses blogging and social media to raise the awareness about the disease of addiction. She has visited all over North and South America. Single mom to two beautiful children she has learned parenting is without a doubt the most rewarding job in the world. Currently the Outreach Director at Stodzy Internet Marketing.
I sometimes forget that when I first got sober my life was utterly destroyed, but yet I’m still here. I sometimes forget that when I walked through the doors of treatment I felt completely broken, but yet I’m still here. And I sometimes forget that almost 2 1/2 years ago I wished for death on a daily basis, but yet I’m still here. I say that, to say this—there is nothing in life that can truly break me and there is nothing in life that I cannot bounce back from. You see one of the most important lessons in my journey of recovery has been learning to live life on life’s terms.
I don’t write that last statement arrogantly, but I write it as a reminder to myself, that no matter how bad things get, no matter how much it seems like my world is coming to an end, I have already experienced the worst and been able to overcome it.
I forget this fact though. I forget just how bad things were for me before I get sober and now that I am enough removed from that experience that it seems like a distant memory, I sometimes forget just how strong I am and just how much the 12 Steps have changed my life. I will come up against a problem in my life and be utterly baffled by it to the point where I can’t imagine continuing and yet, like I said, I’m still here.
Recently I experienced something new in my sobriety. I experienced something that I thought was going to completely ruin my life and in turn completely ruin my sobriety. The pain I experienced was intense and for the first time in a quiet a while I was tremendously angry with God. I would toss and turn in my bed at night, seething with anger towards him for allowing me to feel the way I was feeling, and not understanding why he would do this to me. I didn’t really want to pray and I didn’t really want to talk to him. I just wanted to be angry and run away and so I did for a little while. I gave into the anger and let it consume me, as I searched my mind for answers to the problems I was facing.
Yet, through all of that I didn’t have to drink. I didn’t have to seek the false comfort of alcohol or drugs, but rather I walked through it with the help of my friends and I came out the other side, with my world changed, but my sobriety still intact.
I remember when I first getting sober I heard someone say, ‘I didn’t get sober to be miserable.’ At the time I really liked that saying but the longer I’ve stayed sober the more I have realized just how wrong that statement is. Yes, no one does anything to be miserable, but being sober isn’t about being happy all of the time—because that goal was something that I sought when I was using. I used drugs and drank so that I could manage and control my life and feelings. I wanted to feel good all of the time and what I’ve learned is that is a fool’s errand.
I have learned that the best way to set yourself up for failure is by believing that just because you are sober, you will be blessed with an easy and happy life. Your life will be undeniably happier then when you were using, although that is debatable at times, but the goal of sobriety is not eternal happiness. The goal of sobriety is sobriety.
Sobriety is a way of life and since life has ups and downs, happiness and sadness; sobriety will have that as well. There will be times when I experience joy that is indescribable and there will be times that I experience the depths of despair, because in the end I am human and in the end I am participating in life.
Just because I am sober does not mean that I am excused from the problems of life, it just means that I do not have to destroy myself when I am faced with the tumult that life has to offer. It means that I can finally deal with my problems and face them as an adult, and that when I cannot carry myself, I have friends and a God who I sometimes question to do the work for me.
Sometimes it is hard for me to remember this and recently that is what happened. I couldn’t understand how my world was coming crashing down around me in sobriety and I got so scared that I would never be able to put the pieces back together. That is a lonely place to be and luckily I have amazing friends in my life that reminded of the fallacy of this thinking and were there to love and support me when I couldn’t stand on my own.
So I am glad to say that I am still sober and that I didn’t let the circumstances of life dictate my actions in that regard. With that said I just want anyone who is out there reading this, feeling like their world is coming to an end, to know that you are not alone. If you are currently mad at God because you feel like he deceived you, you are not alone in your thinking and he is not mad at you for feeling that way. Life can be tremendous difficult and it sometimes hard to gauge the reality of a situation from our perception of a situation, so like Winston Churchill said, ‘If you’re going through hell, keep going’ and know that you are capable of overcoming anything.