From the June 2015 magazine.

The Pendant

After just one week sober, a newcomer treats herself—but little does she know she has already won the prize

On the night of my last drunk, I called the only elder in my family who would still speak to me. Not only was she my favorite aunt, she was my only aunt. I hadn’t spoken to her for years and, slurring my words, I asked if I could send my two grown sons to live with her. I felt sure that I had messed them up beyond repair. There was a sheriff’s sign on my door. I was living on food stamps. I had been fired from my job and I was making irrational plans to hitch a pop-up camper to my little pickup truck and would just drive away from my life. I no longer wanted to be a mother or nurse. I no longer wanted to have a house or responsibilities. I no longer wanted to live.

I then called my sister, also a nurse and recovering addict. She suggested that I “take a look” at my relationship with alcohol. She made me promise not to drink for that day and to go to an AA meeting. I did not drink that day. But I did not go to a meeting. It was a Saturday, and the hangover and shame were so bad that I slept and cried all day instead.

-- Anonymous

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