Updated insider information by Chellie Campbell, author of “The Wealthy Spirit: Daily Affirmations for Financial Stress Reduction”
“If you have made mistakes, even serious ones, there is always another chance for you. What we call failure is not the falling down, but the staying down.”—Mary Pickford
My name is Chellie C., and I’m an alcoholic. This is my story of what it was like, what happened and what it is like now. For many years, I drowned my problems in alcohol. Drinking was a habit, my coping mechanism of choice, which increased over time until it got out of control. It started with having a glass of wine when I got home from work. Then two. In classic alcoholic denial, I bought bigger glasses so I could still say I only had two glasses of wine.
One day, with my liquor cabinet practically bare, I went to the grocery store to stock up. I went up to the checkout counter with a bottle of cabernet, a bottle of Merlot, some Chardonnay, Chablis, vodka, gin, bourbon, tequila, Marguerita mix, Bloody Mary mix, some assorted liqueurs—altogether I think I had about twelve bottles in my shopping cart—and some chips.
The woman at the checkout stand started ringing up each bottle, smiled and said knowingly, “Having a party?” Not getting it, I said, “No.” I will never forget the look on that woman’s face. I remember with stark clarity the utter humiliation I felt as I realized that if I was buying twelve bottles of booze, I should be having a party!
That night, I had to face the fact that I was incapable of going a single day without drinking. I had a good friend who always went to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting on Wednesday nights. She sounded pretty excited when I called and asked if I could go to the meeting with her. Apparently, she’d been “saving a seat” for me. There I met a wonderful community of people who had faced their demons and were helping others along with themselves to live life clean and sober. I made a commitment to sobriety that night and I threw away every bottle of alcohol in my house.
Old habits die hard, but if you are determined, die they do. In the next months, I had to face every defect of my character and feel all the feelings that I had used alcohol to avoid. Sometimes after meetings, I would go to my car and collapse in sobs over the steering wheel. Kindly souls knocked on the window and asked if I was all right. But breakdowns will lead eventually to breakthrough, if you are committed. As they say in AA, “It works if you work it.” I grew into a new life and a new self. I deepened and matured. New awareness came to consciousness, and a deeper empathy for people. I cleared away the wreckage of the past and built a better life and a bigger bank account at the same time.
Is there a battle you are fighting? You don’t have to fight it alone. Help is available. You just have to reach out and find it.
Today’s Affirmation: “I have a wonderful community of friends who help me grow and prosper!”