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I am not an Addict, anymore


I recently posted on my Facebook group, Sober Militia that I was sorry I have not been very active in the group. I also reminded them the reason why is because I have been busy doing non-recovery-related things. I then added, "that is the point, isn't it?" When I first quit drinking, I started writing a blog every day about my journey. I thought it would help keep me accountable, and it did. I wrote every day for the first 150 days of my sobriety. After that, I started writing twice a week for a few months and then once a week for a while. Eventually, I realized the writing, or I should say the reason I was writing, had shifted. I no longer felt the need to write about my journey. If I am honest, I probably felt that long before I quit blogging, but I was deep into my blog, podcast, website, and videos at that time. I didn't feel I could just quit. Nevertheless, one day I just quit writing. Do you know what I realized? I was okay. I did not need to write and probably hadn't needed to for quite some time. Do you know what else I realized? I am not an addict, anymore. This rubs the traditional alcohol recovery world wrong, but should it? I don't think so. No, I know so.


To support my theory, let's look at the word addict. Those of you who have followed me since the beginning know I like to pull up definitions occasionally so here you go: "a person with an uncontrolled compulsion to continue engaging in an activity despite suffering negative personal or professional consequences" (Dictionary.com). I think the key here is the phrase, ...uncontrolled compulsion to continue... Annie Grace, author of "This Naked Mind," did an experiment after she quit drinking. She recorded herself getting drunk to see how she acted and to witness for herself the effects of drinking. After the experiment, she simply went back to her work as a non-drinking activist. She was an alcoholic. She is no longer. This is contrary to much of the traditional literature we see and hear out in the recovery world. It is believed, in these realms, that we are forever addicts; we are forever in recovery; we are doomed to a life of meetings, steps, and living one day at a time. I vehemently disagree with this belief. I am proof, Annie Grace is proof, and so are many people out there in the world. Have you ever thought about why you do not hear from them/us as much as you do the other? Because we no longer have the need to talk about, witness, proclaim, relive, or testify our sobriety. You may ask, "If this is true, why are you writing again?" It's a fair question. I'll answer in two parts.


Part 1 - I love to write


When I made the decision to write about my sobriety it was because writing is something I love to do, but I had lost my desire to write for many years. When I quit drinking, I was initially quite anxious. It seemed like a good reason to sit down at the computer every day and force myself to write something. It worked exceptionally well. I was experiencing many emotions from my recent sobriety and writing gave me a powerful outlet. I was able to get out my thoughts and feelings and to reflect on them as well. I remember worrying I would run out of things to say. I never did. I just kept writing and I kept finding things to say. It was pretty amazing, actually. Of course, I ended up turning my blog into a book, "Alcohol-Free, Straight up with a Twist." I hope you will check it out or pass it on to a friend. Putting out that book was a special moment for me for many reasons. One, it showed my ability to overcome adversity, and two; it showed I was back to writing, something I had put off for far too long.


When I show up occasionally these days with a blog about sobriety, it is less about my sobriety and more about my desire to keep writing an active part of my life as well as a desire to maintain a connection to some of you who follow me. I said from the beginning I would continue to write as long as people continue to read my writing. I am trying to live up to that statement, even though I know I have certainly fallen off the sober writing path. But I am here now, for you, and for me.


Part 2 - I have to perpetuate a different story


I went into a lot of detail about this fact in my last blog, a couple of months ago. I really struggle with the negative sober rhetoric that is so prevalent in the online recovery community. One of those things is the title of this blog. The idea of eternal recovery. I cannot sit back and not at least offer another opinion, another side, another perception about a potentially damaging sentiment. So, I sit down at my computer and attempt to put out into the world a contrary view about eternal sobriety. We do not have to live in eternal recovery. We do not have to identify as an addict for the rest of our lives. We do not have to live one day at a time. Now, as I have always said and will continue to always say is that if this works for you, congratulations. Keep it up and keep going on the path that works for you. I applaud anyone who stays off alcohol for any reason and with any means. I am simply saying, it is not the only way. If you are sober curious or struggling with your sobriety, reach out. There are people, groups, blogs, and podcasts out there supporting a different view of sobriety and recovery. I have hundreds of blogs, podcasts, and videos about my beliefs on sobriety and recovery. Check out my website: https://XstopWriting.com


Originally, I thought this was going to be my life's work. To perpetuate a differing view on sobriety and recovery. I thought I could help people see an opposing belief. While I still believe this to be true and will continue to help where I can, I have come to realize it is not my life's work. My life's work is right here in my home. My partner, my son, my job, my passions, my life. I have a lot of life to make up for. I have a lot of people to make up to. I have a lot of life left to live. So, while I will continue to be here for those seeking a different direction, I am also out there, living my life as well and as fully as possible. I hope you will too. Maybe we will meet one day, on a non-recovery-related path. Maybe we will recognize each other because we come from the same place, we have traveled the same path. We will recognize each other because we are aware that sometimes the greatest light shines from the deepest depths of the dark. We may not even need to speak. We may simply nod our heads at each other as we pass by, shoulder to shoulder, because we don't need to talk about our similarities; we don't need to connect over our past, we don't need to justify our struggles. Those days are long gone. Today,


We have shit to do.

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