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My Story-wes1 2011-05-11T05:24:43+00:00
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    I haven’t had any alcohol in over a year and a few weeks. It still seems somewhat surreal to me that I can’t have a beer at a ball game. I don’t crave it nor have I come close to drinking over the last year. I’m usually browsing on Addiction to Rehabilitation most evenings to read about others’ trials and struggles against alcohol and occasionally post to try and help someone through a particularly tough situation they may be facing. In “my story”, I’d like to explain where I was before I stopped drinking (I drank heavily for 20 years), how I stopped drinking, and a few things about me since I stopped drinking. I’m posting this with prayers that it will somehow contribute, even slightly, to someone’s winning battle against alcohol addiction.

    Before I stopped drinking, I would awake every morning and know that I couldn’t stop drinking that day because of the physical addiction and that I needed alcohol to function in life. I had reached a point that I could not function without alcohol. So, I would have 3 or 4 beers first thing in the morning to get me going and drink periodically through out the day to keep the withdrawals at bay and allow me to function. At night, I’d drink until I passed out and would start over the next day. I had begun to do this 7 days a week for the last couple of years. I went to work after drinking, drove my kids to and from places while drinking, and constantly had a beer in my hand or nearby. I never got in trouble with the law and always had success in business, but my relationship with my wife was suffering greatly and I knew it. It bothered me considerably to know what I was doing to her and still not be able to do anything about it (i.e.,quit drinking). I was terrified that my 13 year marriage was going to end. My misery, quilt, and anxiety was at an undescribeable level. I didn’t want to do anything but drink.

    I couldn’t think of any strategy or method that would allow me to break this vicous cycle. There was no way out for me. I didn’t have time to stop functioning and I couldn’t function without alcohol. I was so ticked that I had become so addicted to it.

    Then, one evening just over a year ago, after I managed to slurr a few words to my family to say “I’m too tired to do anything with ya’ll tonight”, my wife gently said to me something that she said often: “You need to stop drinking, you are killing yourself”. I’m not sure what came over me that night, but instead of telling her not to worry about it, I told her that yes I needed to stop drinking, that I have a problem, and that I’m killing myself by drinking as much as I do. We agreed to pour out all of the alcohol in the house that night. The next day I started severe withdrawal symptons, went to the hospital that afternoon, and was in the intensive care unit for several weeks. I don’t remember 90% of what happended in the hospital, but doctors told my family at one point that I could be brain dead or in a coma, and that they didn’t know what else to do for me. It was a miracle that I survived. I couldn’t walk for a few days after getting out of ICU, but managed to get enough strength back to check into an inpatient rehab facility. It seemed like a lifetime since I had seen my kids, so I was happy to be home after the inpatient care. I then completed 10 weeks of intensive outpatient care.

    Since I have stopped drinking, my relationship with God has improved dramatically. I’m praying daily and relying on my faith to get me through the tough situations. I’m thankful to God for my many blessings.

    Since I have stopped drinking, my relationship with my wife has improved substancially. She and I are closer now than we have been in a long time. I thank God every day for my wife. I’m more patient with my kids. I feel blessed to have such wonderful kids and to be able to enjoy them without alcohol. I have a really good relationship with my parents and brothers and sisters.

    Since I have stopped drinking, my business has performed at its lowest level ever. Not sure why, but it has been tough financially on me and my family. However, I have saved over $7K over the last year by not drinking. I’m hopeful that business will improve again and our financial situation will stabilize.

    Finally, I pray for healing for those that are still struggling with addiction. For me, I reached a point where I wanted to live an abundant life as God has planned out for me instead of living a losing battle with alcohol everyday.

    I’ve learned to let go!

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