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August 16
18:00 2019

By: Mike Rudon Jr. –

I told myself I wouldn’t do this. I’m typing and still telling myself I won’t do this. How do I explain that after 75 days without a drink I decided, in all my right senses, to go drink? I mean…I didn’t have to say anything. Very few people know. I could get away with keeping silent. It was a very minor slip – a glitch in what has been a stellar time of clean, positive living. And I caught myself in a hurry, right? No harm, no foul.

I have a few people I turn to for input. Some said keep quiet, move past it, get on with your life. Then there were those who said that I needed to come clean, because there were people who stood by me every single day of my sobriety, rooting me on.

I was and am torn. Because this was never about me. Maybe I shouldn’t have made it so much about me. Maybe I shouldn’t have focused so much attention on me. Maybe I shouldn’t have used Facebook to shine so much light on what really is a very intensely powerful struggle. Maybe what I write helped others. Maybe what I wrote helped me. Maybe it needed to be done. Or maybe it didn’t. Maybe I owe everybody an explanation. Or maybe I don’t. Maybe I owe an apology to those who believed in me. Or maybe I don’t. Maybe the only apology I owe is to myself. Maybe….maybe…maybe. I could do this forever.

This is how I really feel. I love the sober me. And I will keep being the sober me. I have two options at this point. I can analyze, unendingly, what caused me to sit by the sea on Friday, contemplating life and sipping rum. I can make it so romantically tragic it’ll bring tears to your eyes. I can blame disappointment and heartbreak. I can blame love. I can blame loneliness and stress. I can blame any number of things, and any number of factors that fell, wrongly enough, into place. I can even blame people. I could get biblical and blame God. After all I gave Him the wheel. How dare He give it back? And I could go down that route again. There is that option.

Or I can do this. I will continue to be sober. In these days, I saw something in me which I have never seen before. I saw a strength and a goodness which were hidden. I became complacent, so I will work on that. I became arrogant in my sobriety. I will work on that also. I let my emotions run wild, so I know I need to learn control. I know I need to go back to my AA meetings. I know I need to focus on work, and on my family. I have a business I’m starting up, and I have to pour a lot of my energy into that. I have things to do and places to be – and I am not going to lose sight of that.

Did my sobriety change me? YES. I am not the person I was almost three months ago. Will I let a minor slip change me back? Absolutely not. I hated the person I was under the influence. And now I remember every single thing I hated about that person. And I will not go back to live in that hellhole.

I could have made this a tragedy, very easily. But it will not be one. I won’t let it. You, my thirteen faithful readers who have been with me on this journey, will react in different ways. Some will understand. Some will scorn. Some will condemn. Some will say – I knew it. Some will still support. Some will walk away. Okay I was getting carried away. Seemed like more than thirteen readers for a moment.

I will say this – I am sorry. I let down myself. And I feel I let down a lot of people rooting for me. I never thought I would ever feel that disgust in my gut again – that despair and guilt. But I decided to package it up in a little box and put it all away. Because I am way stronger now.

If I could leave with one word of advice – and it is biblical. Alcohol is cunning…baffling and powerful – like the Devil, who uses it to steal, kill and destroy. Strengthen your mind, strengthen your will. And that’s about all I’ve got to say about that.

Oh wait. I thought about never writing this column again, never being so public about my life and my struggle again. I felt I had to do this one. Take it how you want and will. It may, indeed, be the last. I don’t know yet. Okay bye.

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