AA and the 12 steps have completely changed my life, not just being sober but the way I live my life now, the way I deal with things and the way I look at my life. My life is good and I no longer have to drink alcohol.
At about 13 years old, me and one of my mates skived off of school and drank a lot of wine. I don’t remember the alcohol having a huge effect that I liked and didn’t have a great time, it just made me dopey and ill. I would say that was my first proper drink and from then on it progressed real fast. I was drinking on school nights and loved alcohol. I hardly went to school and did not take my GCSEs.
From 14 years old I was seeing psychiatrists and never really felt comfortable around people, but alcohol gave me that comfort and confidence. From day one I reckon I drank like an alcoholic and having obsessive compulsive disorder I was already obsessive and compulsive. I just couldn’t stop when I started.
By about 17/18 I was drinking every day and that’s when the consequences started getting worse and the downward spiral started. In my mid-twenties I was always getting in trouble and getting arrested. Court cases came and so did jail. I liked to fight and did plenty of it. I’ve hurt people and have been hurt myself. I have been through the wars. I’ve had a knife in the spleen, a collapsed lung, broken ribs, busted head and body, and been stabbed and cut a few times. Being drunk would make me vulnerable and the people I had trouble with took advantage of my alcoholic state.
At the end of my drinking I was very isolated, I would wake up and be violently sick and shake uncontrollably. In 2018 I was in hospital 36 times, mainly from alcohol withdrawal. Or I would get picked up from the street and wake up in the hospital. I was living the same day over and over and I was so sick of it. The doctors told me it was too dangerous to just stop drinking and if I carried on the way I was I would be dead in 6 months. I felt hopeless but still comforted by alcohol.
One drunk evening police were called to where I was living and for some reason I put on a mask and armed myself with two knives then walked towards police. They tasered me. Getting arrested that night was a blessing in disguise.
In court on an affray charge I was in the waiting area withdrawing from alcohol very bad and an ambulance was called. I needed help and got it with a suspended sentence, probation and an alcohol program. My probation and care manager had managed to get me 13 days detox followed by 3 months rehab. Detoxing was horrible but after 13 days I was brand new and refreshed for rehab.
I was sent to a rehab in Plymouth called Broadreach and was told even without alcohol my life was at risk in the environment I was in and it was recommended that I stay in Plymouth. The day after I left the treatment centre I was brought along to an AA meeting. I didn’t really want to go but I am so grateful I did. I had blind faith and kept going to the same meetings and got a sponsor. I did not expect AA to work for me how it has but it only works because I work it. My sponsor has taken me through the Steps and passed on to me what he was freely given. I do simple suggestions, attend my home group, do service and take one day at a time, I no longer obsess about alcohol and have been sober since the 23rd of January 2019.
I have the tools to live my life sober and I know I do not have to drink alcohol again. The rehab works wonders and got me sober, but AA has kept me sober. If you don’t believe the 12 Steps can work for you just do as I did and have some blind faith and just be willing. Don’t listen to your own head and you can also have an alcohol free life, and finally after all that chaos – have some peace.
Road to Recovery Plymouth