“Acceptance simply means that you stop trying to deny your reality and you acknowledge it instead.”(Linehan 1993).
As I was reading about DBT, dialectical behavior therapy, I stumbled upon this quote. All my adult life I denied my addiction for fear of being “labeled” an addict. That was the distorted reality I was living in. I cared more about what everyone was going to think, which prevented me from personal growth. I had to accept my reality, that I am an addict. I had to stop trying to alter my addiction into different forms and accept it for who I am. It’s when you surrender to this disease that the actual work begins. My name is V, and I’m an alcoholic! A link to preview the book on Amazon is listed below.
A link to the book on Amazon:
As I sat down and opened up my folder of homework, it was a bit overwhelming. It felt like the first day of school again. I hated doing assignments in school, it gave me anxiety, and I would rush through projects to stamp them complete, and move onto the next. I was told in recovery it’s a marathon, not a sprint, but I love sprinting! So, before I started answering any questions on step one I told myself I have all the time in the world. No phone, no work, and limited TV. There was no excuse why I couldn’t take my time and do it thoroughly. The step one questions were primarily about my relationship with alcohol and how it affected my life. After doing the step one packet and rereading it I came to the conclusion that I was living to drink and drinking to die…….. There has to be a better way! Stay tuned for more.
At the rehab center I was at we had to have steps 1, 2, and 3 done before we could be discharged. Each step had readings and questions you had to answer, along with writing your life story. When I wrote out my life story and put it on paper, it felt as if a small bit of weight had been lifted off my shoulders! My spirits were better and I felt positive about this whole “recovery” thing. So I went on and started doing my step 1 work. Step 1 that’s easy right? No! For 12 years I did want to admit I had a problem, because I was afraid of being labeled, judged, mad fun of. I was pent-up with shame and guilt. Ultimately I need to get humble and get honest to work through step 1. And I learned to implement humility and honesty in all my practices. Till next time….
On February 28th 2017 I had a divine intervention. After 14 years of being an alcoholic I got my first DUI. This event was an awakening to all the hurt I have caused others and all the hurt I had pent-up inside. On March 1st 2017 I entered the Princeton House. This will be my first time going to rehabilitation. I have gone to detox and IOPs, but never inpatient. My mind was so numb at this time that I can’t really say I felt much emotion. I guess I was still processing the whole situation. It took me a few days to get “clear-headed” I guess between the time off alcohol and the medications they were giving me I was starting to feel better. The Rehab I went to have a first responder program, which I did not know about prior to going to The Princeton House. Everyday first responders would get together for an hour and talk about addiction and our line of work. I felt comfortable in this group, it was reliving to know other people in my profession suffer with the same disease. This program helped me realize the work I needed to get done on myself. We were given assignments everyday. I focused my attention on step 1 and it was off to the races for me……