I happened to be in the college Math Lab the other day (not to be confused with Meth Lab) when I felt a tap on my shoulder, I looked around and saw an old friend who I hadn’t seen in a couple of years.
I know him from AA and it turns out that he’s back at school too and plugging away at his degree. As we were chatting I happened to glance down the hallway and noticed another familiar face walking towards us…enter a another friend from the rooms of AA.
We talked for about ten minutes, catching up and discussing what each of us are studying and what we hope to do with our lives once we get a degree. It was an odd feeling and the irony of our meeting seemed to dawn on us all at the same time because we all shut up, looked at each other and said, “F***, this is weird!
Why was it weird? Well just over four years ago I had somehow managed to get 6 months sober and I was convinced the lady standing opposite me now was going to die. She was out of control, living on the streets, drinking and smoking crack, weighing in at 95 pounds. Yet, here she was now, clean and sober for over four years, looking healthy, back in school after 30 years away from it and talking animatedly about her goals, studying and working a regular job.
Given how destructive and all-consuming this disease is, it never ceases to amaze me when anyone gets clean and more so how our lives can change because of it. We recovering addicts are definitely a resilient lot and when we channel our efforts in a new positive direction we are a force to be reckoned with. It’s hard for me to comprehend where I was 5 years ago and where my friends in the Math lab were too. As we stood there talking, we joked that if we could put as much effort into our studying as we did with our using we would be okay.
Well, it seems that the three of us must be doing that because these once hopeless alcoholics are now happy straight A students…and we are all over 40 years old. Sobriety has taught me so many things but especially that it is never too late to change and it’s definitely never too late to learn.