Let’s just get right to it, shall we? Here are 10 things to be grateful for..when? Today.
Not the boring kind. Nowadays, being clean and sober means having our wits about us…and our wit. When I was in my active addiction, I definitely felt like I was going crazy on a daily basis. Today, I am grateful for my sanity but, the kind of sanity that generally has me reassuring those who don’t know me well that I’m not on anything. This, I think, is because of a common misconception: when we are using drugs and alcohol – for us alcoholics and addicts – we’re no fun, at all. Being clean and sober allows us to be playful and silly and, sometimes, in ways that leave others scratching their heads and wondering, “What are they on?” That’s just it. Nothing. I’m high on life, baby.
#2. Gorgeous sleep
Man, I don’t know about you but, in my active addiction I had the worst case of insomnia. That’s probably not much of an exaggeration, either. I had all three kinds of insomnia: difficulty falling asleep, difficulty staying asleep and rising early – meaning, I didn’t get much sleep. In fact, one of my DOCs (besides heroin and crack) was the sleeping pill, Ambien – I ate it by the handful, like M&Ms. Once I got clean however, I have had the best sleep. I can nap at the drop of a hat and I’m out once my head hits the pillow. Which brings us to the next item on our gratitude list…
#3. Clear conscience
Having a clear conscience makes for great sleep and less anxiety, in general. In my using days, I was filled with so much guilt and shame as well as fear that I would be found out for what I was. I also had the very real fear of getting caught for all of the illegal sh*t I was doing in order to support my drug habit. Today, I don’t have those feelings taking up space in my mind and body. I mean, I’m no saint, but it’s all about progress, not perfection. It’s way easier being honest and truthful than trying to keep track of all the lies and stories I used to tell.
#4. Belly laughter
They say laughter is the best medicine and before you roll your eyes at this, there is actual scientific evidence to support the many health benefits of good ol’ hearty belly laughter. When I was out there using, I rarely laughed and, if I did, most often it was a forced laugh because it was appropriate, even expected in the given situation. Getting clean certainly nourished my funny bone back to health and laughing is probably one of my most favorite things to do, besides this next thing…
#5. Being able to eat
And I mean this in both the physical/literal sense and in the financial sense. My drug addiction had gotten so bad that I was hardly eating solid foods, if any, and I was very skinny – like, you could count all my ribs and bones in my spine. When I got into treatment, I continued to lose weight and was physically unable to eat solid foods. The docs had to give me special medication just so I could stomach real food. So, today, I am grateful for both the ability to eat good food as well as the means to pay for said food. I know a lot of you can identify with that.
#6. True friendship
Today, we can be grateful for true friendship and real, authentic, trustworthy friends. The “friends” I used to have were all using buddies that would through each other under the bus if given the opportunity. This is not the case today. #RideOrDieFriends
You know that saying, “If you haven’t got your health, you haven’t got anything?” Well, it’s so true. Some of us might still be dealing with some health consequences from our addiction but, we’re on the road to recovery – in more ways than one.
No longer broken inside, we can experience feeling happy, joyous and free.
Another thing to be grateful for today is freedom – freedom of choice. In our active addiction, we became slaves to the drugs and to the lifestyle. Today, we have the choice not to live that way anymore.
Well, duh…one of the things to be grateful for today is our sobriety. Without it, we wouldn’t have any of the other things on this list. Of that I’m certain.
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