Tag Archives: Alcoholic

Misery And The Bottle – Proverbs 31:6-7

Misery And The Bottle – Proverbs 31:6-7

My misery
No longer ties to the bottle
And the brokenness ti brought
Faded away
The beer
The wine
Seem all so distant
Not found upon this path
I walk with the Lord
With Him I find my joy
And the strength to leave my past
And the bottle no longer holds me
Released from deep within it’s grasp

Proverbs 31:6-7
Proverbs 31:6-7

Replaced The Bottle – Ephesians 5:15-20

Replaced The Bottle – Ephesians 5:15-20

Replaced the bottle
With a song
The sick feeling
With joy
All change
When I took
The hand of the Lord
Now I give thanks
For all He has done

Ephesians 5:15-20
Ephesians 5:15-20

My Destruction – Proverbs 16:18

My Destruction – Proverbs 16:18

My destruction
All my pride
Could it all have been avoided
If I had opened up my world
Let them in sooner
To the darkness
And the despair
Could the fall have been less
If not for stubborn pride
A typical man
Wouldn’t show my weakness
Not until it was too late
And all came down
Then pride fell
And the light came in
To set me free
From the worst of myself
To open the doors
To a better path
To a better life

Proverbs 16:18
Proverbs 16:18

Just Hold On – Isaiah 35:4

Just Hold On – Isaiah 35:4

To all those
Treading the same paths
I wandered once before
Times long ago
When the bottle
A strange partner
In an effort
To break my world
To you
I say this
Hold on
Be strong
I know the pain
The emptiness
The despair
But He will come
Just wait
Stay strong
The world will change
Darkness to light
Hope from despair
So fear not
The time will come
Just hold on

Isaiah 35:4
Isaiah 35:4

9 Years Sober

So today brings up nine years sober, I almost forgot this year, for the last few weeks I’m not sure what day it is!

I’m currently on garden leave as I have given my notice to leave my job for one at another merchants, so for the last four weeks I have barely left the house.  As I wasn’t furloughed last year, we worked right through lockdown, it been an nice change of pace, but with no real routine I’m not sure what day it is from one day to the next, oh well, a few more weeks and I should have some routine back.

This last year hasn’t been easy, I am still troubled by the same chest problem that started at the begin of last year, I still have a persistent cough and shortness of breath, I’ve seen a specialist and am now on the second attempt at treatment by medication, which still isn’t really sorting the problem out, I have a telephone appointment next month with the respiratory specialist, but if there is no change by then, he will refer me to the Ear Nose and Throat department to see if anything in the throat is causing the problem.

At it’s worst, I can cough so hard I start to pass out, everything goes fuzzy, my ears buzz and my body goes numb, it’s take a minute or two to come back around to normal, this at times was happening four or five times an hour, not great when I was at work.  At the moment it isn’t that bad, but I guess I’ve not been very active either, today I’ve been out for a couple of walks with friends, the second one this evening was the longest I’ve walked since these problems started, so at this moment of time I am coughing quite a bit, hopefully it will settle down over the evening.  At times last year walking to work was a problem, I would get half way and be so short of breath that my legs would begin to ache so bad, I would have to struggle the rest of the way and then hopefully recharge a little bit when I got to work.  This from someone who usually could go out on a twelve or thirteen mile walk at a fast pace with no problems at all. 

Health problems aside, I am still sober, it still has it temptation every now and again, but as each year passes they get easier to deal with.  I still get that strength from the Lord, it’s not mine.

I thank God for that strength, the mercy and grace that forgave a mess like me.  I thank God for the friends He brought me to, that help pick me up when I’m down, I thank Him too for everyone who has heard or read my story and offered any amount of encouragement or support, I thank everyone for that support, you certainly help to make this journey easier.

This is just year nine, this is still the beginning of a journey that will continue for many years to come, I’ve never treat like it’s the end or the middle, I chose to see it as the beginning and that way it always going to remind me that there is a long way to go, so there is still a lot of hard work and perseverance to go.

I heard this song on the end credits of a film I watch recently, I immediately downloaded it and have been listening to it everyday ever since, I pray this gift will last forever.

THIS GIFT by GLEN HANSARD
This gift will last forever
This gift will never let you down
Some things are made from better stuff
This gift is waiting to be found

Your heart’s in wide receiving
Been too long buried in the sand
Some things require leaving
This gift will fall right in your hand
Just try to understand

If you long enough
And you don’t give up
If you’re strong enough
And you don’t give up
And you

You’ll be no harbor to the sorrow
Just let it go

Don’t hang your head in sorrow
Don’t give up just before you win
Don’t wait around for tomorrow
Open up your arms and let it in

This gift will last forever
This gift will never let you down
Some things are made from better stuff
This gift is ready to be found
Just you believe it now

This gift will last forever
This gift will never let you down
Some things are made from better stuff
This gift is ready to be found
Your heart’s in wide receiving
Been too long buried in the sand
Some things require believing
These things just fall right in your hand
Just try to understand

If you long enough
And you don’t give up
If you’re strong enough
And you don’t give up

Why Me? – Romans 7:24-25

Why Me? – Romans 7:24-25

Why me?
How am I worth it?
Just a wretch
Deep in his sin
Sinking in a bottle
Unable to live
Yet still He came
His words were heard
Where the bottle faded
Temptation with it
Broken set free
Rebuilt by faith
Risen to find life
By the sacrifice of Christ
Who paid this debt
Amassed in sin
To set a man free
To live from within
But still I ask
Why me?

Romans 7:24-25

Romans 7:24-25

A Mind In The Bottle – 1 Peter 1:13

A Mind In The Bottle – 1 Peter 1:13

Where was my mind
Of tortured torment and turmoil
Trying to find a way out
Searching for a reason
For being stuck in that bottle
Not wanting to return
Still one can only take so much
Before a heart and soul can break
Where no matter what the comfort zone
You still need a way to move on
But how and why
It’s so cosy there
Trapped inside that bottle
Where nothing makes much sense
Yet no one can reach you
You’ve shut out the ones you love
And the world outside doesn’t give two hoots
What was the point i n carrying on
You can cry all your tears
Blame the world for all you like
But the walls keep closing in
And the air within the bottle gets so very tight
But at the moment of the breaking
It takes all the strength you have
To turn oneself into a hypocrite
And cry out to the Lord
On someone come save me
Of this drowning I can take no more
Still no matter where you find yourself
The cries are answered by the Lord
He who breaks down all walls before Him
Rips apart the barriers we build
No one is beyond saving
Who cries out to our God
Now with a sober mindset
I can look back on those times
And in these words I’ve written here
You can clearly see where was my mind
But now it’s been set free by grace
Release to a world beyond the bottle
By the saviour who heard the cries
Of a s self tortured mind
So this mind now lives in the hope
To see the Christ at His returning

1 Peter 1:13

1 Peter 1:13

3000 Days Sober

Well at times it’s not been an easy ride, sometimes painful both physically and mentally, then sometimes it’s been easy going and fun.

From a time when the thought of getting through a night without a drink was a testing time, when even the people around me would rather I had a drink than try to go without, to now when the thought of drinking, even in the bad times seems so far away, it’s hard to believe I am the same person, only better I hope.

I guess writing this last paragraph has made think, was I better person drinking or sober back then, because it seems I was better to be around if I was drinking.  I think I know the answer and sadly I think it was probably the former.

I guess the frustration of life that led to the drinking, then became the frustration of not having that comfort zone of where the drink would take me when I wanted to escape the frustration of life.  Just a circle of frustration, day after day.

I know I would pace around, I was restless and irritable, I would take it out on those around me, not physically, but just my attitude, I would be quick tempered and my words would be nasty or rude, especially to my young kids.  Eventually the frustration led to nervously scratching at the skin on my arms, until sometimes they would bleed, this is who I became…

A man who could not deal with the frustration of life.

Then when the world around me fell apart, that’s when He came into my life, part of me I guess was trying to find a Saviour, but I believe He had over the previous four years been setting thoughts in my mind that would lead me to Him when I needed Him the most. The music I had been listening to, the people that came into my life, they all came together when I needed help the most.

And then, when I finally found myself in a position to pray and ask for help, there it was and the feeling when I knew my prayer had been answered was so joyful it began to change everything.

Life is not easy now, I still have the chest problems that have bothered me since the beginning of the year, I’m still coughing so hard I nearly pass out. Some days it maybe only be a couple of times, others it can be a couple of times an hour. On top of that the headaches that plagued me last summer have come back too, to say I am worn out is an understatement , but life could be a lost worst, I am alive, I am still kicking and I am still sober, I will keep going.

So here’s to the nest 3000 days and wherever that leads me.

SHINE ON by NEEDTOBREATHE
Somewhere between the end
And the point where we begin
There’s a fire burning brightly
That’s found it’s way to dim
When the feeling’s gone…

Shine on Shine on
and onto something new its long and overdue
I will remember you
Shine on shine on
And let the other’s see you’ve got your victory
Will you remember me

I was with you in the valley
And up upon that hill
So take just one more step in front of you
For I am with you still you still
And you’re not alone
Shine on Shine on
And onto something new its long and overdue
I will remember you
Shine on shine on
And let the other’s see you’ve got your victory
Will you remember me

Can you see my hands are open I am waiting just ahead
And you think you need it all now
But you needed me instead

Shine on shine on shine on shine on won’t you won’t you shine

Shine on Shine on
And onto something new its long and overdue
I will remember you
Shine on shine on
And let the other’s see you’ve got your victory
Will you remember me

Somewhere between the end and the point where we began

8 Years Sober

It’s hard to believe I’ve made it through to eight years sober today, usually something to celebrate, but here alone in this uncertain period of lock down it seems trivial and not really worth the celebration.

Its been a tough last nine months, I spent the second half of last year suffering with headaches, in the end the doctors put them down to tension headaches. At first they thought it was because my blood pressure had gone back up to sky high levels, despite the tablets, so with some experimentation with different tablets and numerous trips back to the doctors it came back down, but the headaches remained, thankfully they became less severe and manageable that I just got used to them.

For the last twelve weeks I’ve had a cough that just won’t go, that was before this Covid-19 virus had made the news, again despite frequent trips back to the doctors and blood tests and x-rays, they still can not diagnose it, so now I have been referred to a specialist because they down know what’s going on, when that’s going to happen given the current situation is anyone’s guess. At least for the time being at has eased, it hurts my ribs to cough now, at least I’m not almost passing out each time I cough, that was hard going for a while.

Given the symptoms of this virus and a persistent couch being one of them, I have been worried, any sign of a temperature I start to panic, but so far it’s all okay. Imagine going to the shop and not being able to stop myself coughing, I’ve definitely had some funny looks in the last few weeks. It’s a worrying time for all at the moment, although we may not like this lock down that most of us face, but it is necessary and those that make these decisions are doing what they can to save as many lives as possible.

But given all that, I’m still fighting, still sober, still thankful to our God for the grace of a second chance. I’m grateful for the people God has brought into my life to help me along the way, I couldn’t have done any of this without them.

RESCUE STORY by ZACH WILLIAMS
There I was empty-handed
Crying out from the pit of my despair
There You were in the shadows
Holding out Your hand You met me there

And now where would I be without You?
Where would I be, Jesus?

You were the voice in the desert
Calling me out in the dead of night
Fighting my battles for me
You are my rescue story
Lifted me up from the ashes
Carried my soul from death to life
Bringing me from glory to glory
You are my rescue story

You are, You are
You are my rescue story
You are, You are

You were writing the pages
Before I had a name
Before I needed grace, oh
Singing songs of redemption
‘Cause every time I ran away
You were louder than my shame

And now where would I be without You?
Where would I be, Jesus?

You were the voice in the desert
Calling me out in the dead of night
Fighting my battles for me
You are my rescue story
Lifted me up from the ashes
Carried my soul from death to life
Bringing me from glory to glory
You are my rescue story

You never gave up on me
You never gave up on me
You are my testimony, ooh…
You never gave up on me
You never gave up on me
You are my testimony, ooh…
You never gave up on me
Oh, You never gave up on me
Oh, this is my testimony

Oh, You were the voice in the desert
Calling me out in the dead of night
Fighting my battles for me
You are my rescue story
Lifted me up from the ashes
Carried my soul from death to life
Bringing me from glory to glory
‘Cause You are my rescue story

You are, You are (You are my rescue story)
Oh, You never gave up on me, never gave up on me
You are, You are
Yeah, You are my rescue story

2800 Days, 400 Weeks Sober

2800 Days, 400 Weeks Sober

From a time it would be hard to imagine getting through one day without alcohol to 2800 days, 400 weeks later, now it’s hard to imagine how I could have got this far without the Grace and the Strength of the Lord, none of this could be done without His love.

Before I wasn’t a nice person to be around when I tried not to drink, there were times when I had no money left and fought the urge to take what money I can find in the house to get a drink. I was short tempered and on edge, pacing around, snapping at the kids.  On those night’s Victoria would give me the money she had saved for food or bills, she said she couldn’t have me in the house like this, I was better to be around drinking, than not, that wasn’t normal, was it?

Somewhere deep down I guess I knew there was a problem, but that’s it with addiction isn’t it, it won’t let you admit it.  I was more comfortable drifting off into a deep sleep with a body pulsing with alcohol than spending quality time with those who loved me.

Before I realised how bad it was, I had lost the person I loved most, thankfully the kids never saw the worst of it, I wasn’t violent or abusive, in fact given the amount I drank I never lost control, I just got comfortable.  But as time went on it took more and more to get to that point, to get to the point I could sleep through the night.

My excuse, it was so I could relax and sleep, get through my problems without sinking, not much of an excuse I know.  I was convinced I was in control, not until I realised I had lost Victoria, did I realise how bad I was and how in reality I had lost myself.  In a way I hadn’t lost her, I guess she had lost the real me.

Even before the day I so wanted to take my own life, before my soon to be Pastor came to see me, before I made that first prayer, I can see the path to recovery that God had laid out to me.

He brought people into my life that would be the ones who helped me through those early weeks of recovery.  He put his word in my heart through music, four years before I turned to God, I had begun listening to Christian Alternative and Rock music, I sang along, not understanding the truth within it, but it was there for a reason, steps to come home to.

No one said it would be an easy ride, it hasn’t been.

Within a few weeks of quitting drinking, the withdrawals set in and the aches and pain almost became unbearable, to the point I felt drinking again was the only freedom from it.

I soon found out that is was prayer that set me free from the pain and the pull of the bottle.

At times I struggle with depression and anxiety, I’ve had a spell on anti depressants.  Currently I have to take mild anti depressant for persistent headaches that I’ve had since June, they’ve been diagnosed as tension headaches, some days they get me down, others aren’t too bad, light makes it worse, so I now wear glasses for reading etc, but also if I find the lights bringing my headache on.

I’ve been through periods of anxiety and suffered only a few weeks ago from a series of panic attacks, it made life difficult for a few weeks.

But I keep fighting, keep counting those days.

In truth, it may been 400 weeks, but this is just the start of the journey, just the beginning of a journey through life with God, everyday is a step in His grace, a day to be thankful for, even in the depression, the anxiety, the pain, I can still be thankful that He loved me enough to save me.

A few weeks ago I came across this song when I heard Dolly Parton had sung a it at the recent Country Music Awards Ceremony, over here in the UK we don’t really know much about Country Music, but most people know who Dolly is, there is after all only one Dolly Parton.  Once I heard the live version I sought out the original and came across Zach Williams’ album, I love it, but this song I have had on repeat for most of the last few weeks, I feel it could have almost been written for me, it expresses exactly how I feel, through everything THERE WAS JESUS.

THERE WAS JESUS by ZACH WILLIAMS & DOLLY PARTON
Every time I try to make it on my own
Every time I try to stand, I start to fall
And all those lonely roads that I have traveled on
There was Jesus

When the life I built came crashing to the ground
When the friends I had were nowhere to be found
I couldn’t see it then but I can see it now
There was Jesus

In the waiting, in the searching
In the healing, in the hurting
Like a blessing buried in the broken pieces
Every minute, every moment
Where I’ve been or where I’m going
Even when I didn’t know it
Or couldn’t see it
There was Jesus

For this man who needs amazing kind of grace
For forgiveness and a price I couldn’t pay
I’m not perfect so I thank God every day
There was Jesus
There was Jesus

In the waiting, in the searching
In the healing, in the hurting
Like a blessing buried in the broken pieces
Every minute, every moment
Where I’ve been or where I’m going
Even when I didn’t know it
Or couldn’t see it

There was Jesus
On the mountains
In the valleys
There was Jesus
In the shadows
Of the alleys

There was Jesus
In the fire, in the flood
There was Jesus
Always is and always was, oh

No, I never walk alone
Never walk alone
You’re always there

In the waiting, in the searching
In the healing, in the hurting
Like a blessing buried in the broken pieces
Every minute, every moment
Where I’ve been or where I’m going
Even when I didn’t know it
Or couldn’t see it
There was Jesus

There was Jesus
There was Jesus
There was Jesus