Every day I cheat the reaper. No, really, I do. And the jailer and Nurse Ratched, too. Fuck yeah, as the kids say, get your hands offa me, witches!
In September of 1985, I was young, I worked in a little grocery store, and I lived in an upstairs flat in a hip little burb called Royal Oak. As soon as the air turned cool, I liked to wear a fake leather jacket I had, that a guy had bought for me in Texas. We were in a second-hand shop and I was coveting the jacket, but couldn't afford it. He said, "Put it on one more time," so I did, sad that I couldn't have it. Then he said, "Now walk out." He had paid for it while I wasn't looking. What a guy! How I loved that thing.
In September of 1985, I had been trying for a year and a half to get sober. I would get a few months, then relapse. It was no joke; when you find yourself standing on a chair in the middle of your bedroom with a broom in your hands, trying to sweep the giant bugs off the ceiling, it isn't fun anymore. Truth be told, it had not been fun in a very long time.
I went to meetings, read the literature, did my meditations, used the phone, and still couldn't stay stopped, because....the craving, baby. In September 1985, I felt like I had been carrying a giant gorilla around on my back all month, a gorilla that kept chanting in my ear to take a drink. I resisted, fought, swore, lost sleep, and still, the gorilla. Finally, on September 29th, I caved and got drunk for what turned out to be the last time. I can't tell you how much I hated facing myself and my friends the next morning, having failed once again.
Earlier that year, I had prayed over a physical problem I had, that I couldn't afford a doctor for. Overnight--literally overnight--it disappeared as if it had never been. Don't talk to me about coincidence. So, the next time I felt that craving to take a drink, I prayed again. I prayed that Goddess would get me through the night sober. I did stay sober that night, and every night since, for the past 27 years.
Today is my sobriety anniversary. The jailer, the orderly and the undertaker will have to wait. I'm sober and sane and alive. Thank you, Goddess, for saving this girl.