Today is Day 13, and I am reflecting on truth, a word that is not new to my mind but is new to my action. So as I listened to the radio this morning, the announcer talked about the scripture of the day. Well it just so happens (uh huh) that today’s reading pertains to a guy named Eleazar. If you do not know the story, I’ll be brief and paraphrase.
He is 90 years old and the new law of the land is to consume pork which is against his principles. His friends get him a substitute and tell him to just act like he’s eating pork. It looks the same, and no one in authority will know the difference. He can go with the flow and not be punished for disobeying the law. Sounds like he has some nice friends who are looking out for his life. However, Eleazar is his own man and stands firm in his belief; he refuses. He will NOT eat the look alike because he says it will bring shame upon him and he will serve as a poor example for those who follow him. He wishes to leave a noble example for others to use as a guide in their personal lives. His friends are furious and just want him to eat the replica! However, he opts for the truth. In his heart, he accepts his punishment and knows that his death is willingly and knowingly serving the Lord.
I thought about this for a bit and what my role has been in being sober. I am big on making a plan and having an idea of how I want the holidays to play out. (And when they don’t, because I am not naive to think things go according to my plans, at least I have thought ahead to how I am going to handle MYSELF around alcohol and family.)
Anyway, one of the “tricks” I have been told is to, in a social setting, bring a premixed bottle for myself so it looks “as if” I am drinking. Yesterday, I would have said great plan. However, after hearing this reading today, I really thought about what I want for me in my recovery. What is my Truth?
I don’t want to walk around with a fake drink and pretend that I am assimilating. I don’t want to hide anymore. I have hidden behind alcohol for 30 years. So far, my truth about my sobriety has been in confidence with my therapist, my husband, and online. That’s pretty limited and not living the truth as I want it.
So, as two of my coworkers and I were en route to the hospital to visit our beloved friend (who has terminal cancer and has hours to live) in the hospital, I told them I gave up drinking. I said, “This is particularly hard for me right now because I have not had a drink in 13 days. I am actually feeling with my mind, heart, and soul for the first time as an adult. I am an alcoholic.”
And you know what? They hugged me and told me how grateful they were that I made a healthy choice for myself. No shame, no guilt, no pork. Just love.