From the December 2014 magazine.

I Give Back With Fervor

I was gently placed in AA by the God of my understanding a little more than three years ago. I had reached the point of desperation from pancreatitis by carrying a bottle of vodka in my purse out of necessity. Yet amazingly, I was completely unaware that I was an alcoholic. The friends I had left used me for their primary purpose, while the ones who truly loved me had to step away so they wouldn't have to watch me kill myself.

I had had two pregnancies with two different men, and I wondered why I carried with me the scarlet letter. I walked on legs that should not have held me up, and I drank in volumes that were toxic even to men of normal size. My heart hurt, my body was tired and my spirit was dead. Who knows what would have happened had I not cried out for help that day. My mom was on the other end of the phone and my God was cradling me. My obsession was lifted, and I began my journey—and what an amazing journey!

-- J.S.

Ocean City, New Jersey

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