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Christmas Past, Christmas Present

An AA who relapsed compares that year's holiday with this one

The Christmas before last was the worst. Four years ago, I gave up 13 years of sobriety to drink and abuse pain medication. For my decision to drink again I was rewarded with a divorce and a business deal that went sour. I had been warned that all the bad things that hadn't happened to me yet would if I went back to drinking but some how I chose to ignore that advice. Who was I to think that the rules of alcoholic drinking did not apply to me?

Thirty years ago when I went to my first AA meeting a few of the old timers said "kid I spilled more booze on my tie than you drank." Many more said, "alcoholism was like an elevator and you could get off before it went to the bottom floor." Of course I decided to listen to the minority and after a year of sobriety and my life getting better I drank for another 10 years. I figured I hadn't lost a wife, a job, or thousands of dollars and most importantly I couldn't drink a fifth a day which seemed to be the minimum for a true alcoholic. Never mind that I wasn't married or employed and I had always been broke. The capacity for alcohol would increase, it is one of the rules of alcoholic drinking.

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