Steven, with a sobriety date of August 7, 2016, shares his story.
Registration for the Bozeman, Montana Retreat opened up this past Friday. Space is limited for this retreat. You can find more information about events here
Internet memes…a picture, coupled with a few short words, can spread powerful messages. Paul describes one he saw the other day. It was an old school telephone with the words, “when the phone was attached with a wire humans were free”. Paul encourages listeners to put their phone down for a couple of hours each day.
Paul talks about courage. Courage is being OK with not knowing what is happening next. We don’t know what’s going to happen when we quit drinking. This can be frightening. In recovery we don’t need to be at level 10 courageousness at all times. Paul’s advice is to listen to your body, it will tell you when it’s time to be courageous or time to go a little slower.
[7:36] Paul Introduces Steven.
Steven, with a sobriety date of August 7, 2016, is 30 years old and is from Bakersfield, CA. He works for a utility company. He has a beautiful girlfriend. Steven has always enjoyed outdoor activities and since being sober he has added reading and meditation to his list of things he enjoys.
[10:00] Give us a little background about your drinking.
Steven had his first few beers at the age of 13, but didn’t start drinking heavily until his senior year of high school when he started binge drinking on the weekends. That mind-altering feeling, that that first drink at the age of 13 gave him, filled a void that he always felt he had. Steven was kicked out at 18 and got his first DUI/wreck at 19. He continued to drink and 8 yrs. later he got his 2nd DUI with a BAC of .29. This 2nd DUI was an eye opener for Steven, and walking out of jail after it he decided to take a break from alcohol…that was August 7, 2016.
[18:30] What would you say to listeners that are trying to “think their way” through sobriety?
He would tell them it’s not going to happen.
[21:22] Walk us through what happened when you walked out of jail on August 7, 2016.
The first few weeks were tough. Nobody knew about his 2nd DUI because he was too embarrassed to tell anyone. For a few months he went into hibernation mode, only going from home, to work, and back home. He met, and started dating a girl at about the 4th month mark and that lasted until he had a year of sobriety. That breakup did not go well and he started obsessing about drinking again. He went as far as pouring himself a glass of Jack Daniels, but because he had a healthy fear of alcohol, he played the tape forward and called a sober friend instead of drinking it. The next night he went to his first AA meeting and has continued to go ever since.
[26:10] Talk to us about your experience with AA.
Because Steven’s mom was in NA he knew that there was something out there that could help. He didn’t know what to expect when he walked into his first meeting, but he knew he needed some help staying sober. When he left that first meeting he wasn’t sure if he would go back. A man at the meeting followed Steven outside to talk to him and invited him to a meeting the following night. That man became Steven’s sponsor. He had a willingness and felt hope in the rooms of AA.
[35:54] Are you open about the fact that you are in recovery?
At first he wasn’t, he was still worried about being judged. After 6 months of AA he realized that he shouldn’t be ashamed of this part of his life. He is now very open about it and feels that that helps him. He also hopes that by being open about it he will be able to help others.
[38:20] What is on your bucket list in sobriety?
He just wants to live the best life he can live. He wants to get out there and travel the world and be able to remember it.
[40:30] Rapid Fire Round
- What was your worst memory from drinking?
Waking up out of a blackout after I wrapped my truck around a power pole, took out a tree, a no parking sign, and went through a brick wall.
- Apart from AA what are some other resources you can recommend?
The book This Naked Mind, the Recovery Elevator podcast and other podcasts.
- In regards to sobriety what is the best advice you have ever received?
A lady once told me, “everything is going to be OK and you never have to drink again if you don’t want to,” and that just burned in my brain.
- What parting piece of advice can you give to listeners?
Get honest with yourself and give yourself a chance to be that person that has been locked up inside of you all this time.
- You might be an alcoholic if…
You wake up 2 hours from your hometown, at a train station, you don’t have the slightest clue how you got there, with a massive headache, a massive hangover, and without a shirt.
Bozeman Retreat – August 14-18, 2019
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“Recovery Elevator – It all starts from the inside.”