“Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things alcoholics are not supposed to do,” write the authors of “The Big Book” of Alcoholics Anonymous. The authors describe the many ways alcoholics are expected to avoid alcohol. Conditions of life often include the presence of alcohol and sometimes the present of drugs. More than the presence of specific substances, life conditions often include triggers, the small cues in our brain, which trigger cravings for drugs and alcohol. “We meet these conditions every day,” the authors explain. “An alcoholic who cannot meet them still has an alcoholic mind; there is something the matter with his spiritual status.” The authors then describe that the only way an alcoholic could truly avoid any condition in which they might be tempted to drink would be to move to a polar ice cap, but “…even there an Eskimo might turn up with a bottle of scotch and ruin everything!”
Life happens on life’s terms, not ours. We become spiritually fit in recovery to take the great risk of living life on life’s terms without having to use drugs and alcohol. It is impossible to completely shield yourself from every single risk of being triggered by the conditions of life. It is also a sad effort. Addiction and alcoholism leave many people feeling isolated and unable to enjoy their lives anymore. Completely controlled by drugs and alcohol, they only run a few risks in their lives: the risk of overdosing and dying or the risk of experiencing withdrawals if they don’t continue to drink and use. To most people on the other side of addiction, that really isn’t living. Addicts and alcoholics are alive- their hearts are beating, their brains are mostly functioning, but they aren’t really living anymore.
Once we become sober, we get afraid of losing the life we have so generously been given back to us. We stop taking risks because we are afraid of risking too much after we’ve worked so hard to gain our lives back. Risks are important for living. We have to trust our spiritual fitness to be strong, have the stamina, and endurance. When we are spiritually fit and believe in our ability to stay sober, to continue recovering is sure-footed, there are few areas in life we cannot walk. It is the ultimate wonder of recovery to be able to go where we boldly did not think we could go before- because, in our addiction, we went where we never thought we were capable of going.
You are not weak for struggling with drug and alcohol addiction. By calling and asking for help, you are already winning. Design For Change wants to offer you the hope and freedom which are promised in recovery. Our treatment programs are a refuge from addiction, offering a place of safety and guidance in the fight against addiction. You can come out victorious.