B is for Better Late Than Never
The thought often crosses my mind that I could have accomplished so much more if I had gotten sober and into recovery much sooner. This line of thinking is fairly useless and only leads me to self-pity and shame which leads to drinking and the cycle starts again.. It is best to live in the today and be grateful for the sobriety I do have. The very real truth is I could have never quit drinking. I am close to people who still drink at alcoholic levels.
Someone with far more life experience and sobriety told me that often in an alcoholic's late 30's or early 40's their life begins to implode. That was very much the case for me. I got sober at 38 and the implosion of relationships, finances and health were in pieces all around me. The alcoholic cycle was in full motion. I would wake up sick and hungover just to work through it, just to drink and pass out to find myself there the next day. Like kids in a revolving door spinning over and over and over my daily hell left me feeling like there was absolutely no way out.
In the last several years I have had the honor of meeting a lot of men much older and a few with less time sober. Many are so filled with gratitude and joy for the gift of sobriety that has been given to them. It is in the tears and stories of these men that I can see how much I truly have. I can look at my past and see so many days squandered in a wasted life or I can see invaluable lessons that have lead me to this moment. Many of those painful lessons continue to shape my life today. Now whenever I feel the twinge of regret about something in the past I try to look for some the actions in the present that can counter those feelings and create a future I can be excited to see.