Lynyrd Skynyrd Freebird plays rhythmically. The iconic guitar solo drives forward these words as its invigorating style. I ponder about the energy of life. My energy for life. My lust for life. I mean where did it disappear for all those years. How did I get trapped in a cycle of destructive mundanity? Convinced that alcohol would save me. On reflection it is sad. Sad that it got to that point. Sad that I life beat me down so much that I accepted that fate. Sad that I was prepared to accept that nonexistence as my fate. Sad because I had no belief to escape that torrid existence. Sad because I was scared to test my mantel and fall into freedom. I was stuck.
Well, I say fuck that. One life. One opportunity to be the person I want to be. I say to hell with the shackles of expectation. I say I will walk tall and proud. The scares of the past are now part of my soul. Part of a spirit that never quit and eventually was rewarded. I tore up the script of my life and started writing new chapters as I went along. For over five years I haven’t had a drink now and my life is not the one I used to live. I am not the person that I used to be.
For me, removing alcohol was just the start. It gave clarity to my life. Kind of like removing a lunatic dictator from a country. The problems don’t disappear overnight it just paves the way for progress to happen. Progress takes hard work that appears daunting but is surprisingly rewarding and sometimes enjoyable. And to return to the metaphor; without a direction it is pointless. Well, it was for me. I had to ask myself the question of what would I do with the money and time I no longer waste on alcohol? Travel? Study? Learn music? Get healthy? I did everything that I wanted to do. I wrote lists of things I would like to achieve and then tried them.
For the first time in my life, I am without a goal. I have lived out my dreams. Dreams that once upon a time were so far away from being achievable that they weren’t dreams, they were impossibilities.
I was my own worst enemy back then. I was the obstacle to life. I had a problem for every solution and an encyclopedia of excuses. I was scared of failing and looking stupid. Well, I tried and won. I won my freedom from the soul-sapping habit that used to my dictate life. I have experienced people, places and things I never thought possible. I learned things and did things I thought out of my ability. All thanks to a simple belief;
MY LIFE WILL BE BETTER WITHOUT ALCOHOL!
I used to repeat it like a mantra until it was ingrained in my psyche. Advertising told me I would be better with alcohol. I told myself the opposite. I have constantly been proven right.
I encourage you to try. I’m sure you will be pleasantly surprised.