One night, my son said, “I have woken up many times and have wanted to smoke really bad, but I haven’t been able to since I have been in this place. I don’t know what I will do when I have the chance to do it.”
Sometimes the meetings give me insight into what he is really thinking. Sometimes they scare me to death.
He has said similar things to this before. Every time he does, I get that stomach-clenching, heart-dropping feeling.
Once, at AA the topic was, “When and why you decided to become sober.” That time my son said, “I am sober right now, I haven’t decided if I will stay sober or not. But, I know that I will be sober when I decide.”
He was 107 days sober that day.
I thought, “Wow. After all this time, and all this treatment, he still doesn’t know if he will use again, or not.”
We went out to dinner with his AA sponsor after the meeting. We were at a buffet, and I was able to talk to him While my husband and son were getting some food. I told him that sometimes when he asks my son how it is going, he doesn’t really get the truth. He seems to get practiced, standard answers. I let him know that sometimes my son tells him everything is going great, but it really isn’t. I said he acts like he hates us and finds reasons to argue with us all the time.
I also told him that I wished my son’s comment at the AA meeting would have been more like-- he was sure that he was going to stay sober, not that he hadn’t decided, yet. I said that I was so worried and afraid for him.
His sponsor told me, “Staying sober is a one day at a time decision.”
As I thought about that, I found it interesting, because at the AA meeting one guy said basically the same thing. He said, “We are all just as sober as each other. We all woke up today sober and we are all here, still sober. Hopefully, we will all stay that way tonight. And when we wake up tomorrow, we will have another sober day.”
When my son came back to the table his sponsor said, “We take our sobriety, one day at a time, don’t we?” My son agreed. Then, his sponsor said, “It is a decision that we have to make every day and as long as we can make that decision each day, we are doing good.” I knew that his sponsor was trying to help both me and my son.
Later that night, I was laying in bed thinking about how the Serenity Prayer is good, but I wished that my son had some kind of affirmation that he could read to himself every day that would be more specific for him and would help him decide each day to stay sober. I thought about the things that my son’s sponsor had said and about things that I had been reading lately in a book about the changes that happen to the families of recovering addicts.
I couldn’t sleep. Then, all of a sudden my thoughts started forming lines of a poem. I was amazed that what I was thinking was becoming something awesome. I got up and wrote it down.
My husband woke up after the third time that I had jumped out of bed and asked me what I was doing. I was so excited about my poem that I read it to him at 4:00 in the morning. He was as impressed as a half asleep man could be.
I couldn’t believe that this poem popped into my head. It almost seemed like one of those “meant to be” things.
This is the poem. I feel like it is a Recovering Addicts Daily Affirmation. Written by the mom of one.
I WILL STRIVE TO BE BETTER
THAN I WAS YESTERDAY
BETTER THAN I THINK I CAN BE
I WILL EXPERIENCE
ALL OF MY LIFE
STANDING ON MY OWN TWO FEET
I WILL NOT USE
PEOPLE OR THINGS
IN UNCARING, MEAN, OR SELFISH WAYS
I WILL FEEL MY FEELINGS
AS THEY REALLY ARE
WITH JOY, PAIN, SADNESS, OR FEAR
I WILL FIND HAPPINESS
IN GIVING UNDERSTANDING, LOVE, AND HOPE
TO THE WORLD AND OTHERS AROUND ME
I WILL LET GOD BRING PEACE TO MY SOUL
AND I WILL SHOW MY THANKS
FOR BEING GIVEN
©this poem has been copyrighted