AA, or Alcoholic's Anonymous, is a very popular program of…
What you Learn your First Year Sober
Getting sober comes with a whole new system of rules and etiquette in the recovery world. More over, what you will learn about yourself will top anything you could have ever hoped for. Your self-growth will follow the trajectory of your life as you continue your journey in recovery. As you get stronger and more stable in your recovery, you will find greater strength and stability in yourself. The result is beautiful.
Along the way, you will pick up a lot of knowledge and learning experiences as your role in programs of recovery becomes consistent. Here are some of the things you will learn in your first year of sobriety:
- In general, old timers at a meeting are very grumpy people.
They’ve heard everything you’re about to say and were sick of your shit the minute you walked in the door. They drink a lot of coffee and have all these jokes you don’t understand. Unfortunately for you, they really know how to get and stay sober, if you’re lucky and not too annoying, they’ll help you and treat you like the grandson they never had. Get to know them, they’re wonderful. The guys who came in on the van with you don’t know shit and you’ll find out how annoying they are very shortly when they steal your yogurt and eat your sandwich after they DESTROY the bathroom you just cleaned. Don’t drink and go to meetings.
- You still will have bad days.
You will have good days. You will have gut wrenchingly awful days. Life does not stop and frankly doesn’t care that you got sober. People will still die, people will move, your car will break down, you’ll get fired, your boyfriend will cheat on you, your aunt will still be crazy and say awful things. And you’ll be constantly broke. Don’t drink and go to meetings. Yes, it’s the answer to everything. Why? Because it works, it’s what the grumpy old timers did.
- You will have A LOT of emotions.
A LOT, like A… LOT. You’ll have more emotions of differing types than you’ve ever had. Your emotions will have a whole set of emotions about your other emotions and hold resentments about your other emotions with your primary emotion, ANGER. You will be angry a lot. Anger and resentments will be your go to. Anger will be the first emotion you get back, followed quickly with sadness and then anxiety. People will describe you in your first six months as a hot mess frequently. They are right, you are hot mess. Don’t drink and go to meetings.
- You’ll be with people and suddenly you’ll hear yourself say stuff like “people places and things”, “did you pray about it”, “what was your part in it”,” thanks for sharing”.
You’ll say to yourself what has happened to me, the people at the meeting have taken over my body. Oh my god, it is a cult! Don’t drink and go to meetings.
- You’ll find your drunk friends annoying.
You’ll find them boring. Guess what, the people you’ve been hanging with for years are boring and annoying. You were boring and annoying for years. Yes you. Remember when you went to the club and that you were such a cool little hipster, with just the right clothes, those $400 shoes, with the right people, at the right club, with the right music, drinking the coolest drinks and making all the cool kids moves on the dance floor. Remember that time? Yeah, that time, you were boring, annoying, you were a drunk whiney toddler. You threw up in the parking lot in front of 200 people and were that crying drunk mess that threw up all over themselves? It went viral on YouTube. Don’t worry, in ten or twenty years, people will forget about it. Maybe one day you can find a way to look back and laugh, and thank your higher power that you are no longer like that. Don’t drink and go to meetings.
- Your higher power doesn’t have to be a god.
Use anything you can at first, just not yourself, not your girlfriend, not money. Choose something outside of yourself. You might even find that god you hated or that church you hated isn’t as bad as you thought. Don’t drink and go to meetings.
- Honesty is the best policy.
Just try it. Your continued belief that everyone believed your constant bullshit and manipulation is just not accurate. You just tired a few people out, the others just didn’t want to put up with more of your bullshit listening to your tiring new lies and new explanations about the old lies and old explanations you already gave. A good exercise is to admit to doing something as a kid you think you got away with. Get honest. Don’t drink and go to meetings.
- The only love that is unconditional comes from your dog and your Higher Power.
Your dog is never mad at you. Your dog doesn’t care if you’re not living up to their expectations, their only expectation is regular food and water and a walk or two. Most of your relatives and “normal” friends are a little sketchy. So is the cat. The cat has several resentments for you. Don’t expect the cat to go to family therapy with you. Don’t drink and go to meetings.
E V E R Y W H E R E. They won’t be like your home group and that’s OK. Go to them wherever you are, it’ll be new and different and you’ll meet new fun people. It doesn’t even matter if the meeting is in another language, you’ll get it. Don’t drink and go to meetings
- You’ll be going to a lot of meetings.
Eventually you’ll be comfortable and your leg will stop shaking. You’ll relate to people. You’ll like some people. You won’t understand some people. Some of them are just not likable right now. Find your people, find your tribe. Make a group yours. Make a group your family. Don’t drink and go to meetings.
- Rely on your group of people in recovery for support. DON’T DRINK AND GO TO MEETINGS!
If you or a loved one is seeking treatment for drug or alcohol abuse, we can help. Please reach out to our experienced and knowledgeable admissions coordinators at 877-RECOVER or 877-732-6837. Because We Care.