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  1. #1
    HeidiM's Avatar
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    Default Unexpected Benefits of Being Sober

    I've been sober and active in SMART for 5 years. One of the things that I have learned is that I often find "unexpected benefits" to my decision to move into recovery.

    Recently, my daughter had an infection that went septic and she was in the hospital for 3 days. We were very worried about her as her fever went up and down. Fortunately, the sepsis was in an early stage and the antibiotics worked. That's the really terrific news: she's better and we are home again.


    When you are in the hospital (I stayed with her), there is a lot of time for thinking and I realized that I was experiencing some unexpected benefits of sobriety.

    Here's my story:

    1) when my daughter woke me early on Wed. morning to say that she was in a lot of pain, I was sober. I wasn't hungover. I was able to concentrate and think of how to help her.

    2) When I took her to the doctor's at 11, I was sober. I hadn't been sneaking drinks. I could drive. I wasn't hungover. I could focus.

    3) When the doctor was unclear about whether to take her to the ER or not, I was able to ask her questions. I was clear headed.

    4) When my "gut" told me that something was really wrong, I was able to drive her to the ER because I had not been drinking. My daughter was in a great deal of pain and out of it. I was able to interact with the medical personel in a proactive way.

    5) When she was admitted to the hospital, I was able to stay with her. I wasn't secretly wanting to go home so that I could start my drinking. I wasn't secretly sneaking wine into water bottles and sipping it, hoping no one would notice.

    6) I was sober and alert when my daughter's condition worsened that night in the hospital (good thing I was able to be there - because I was sober).

    7) As she got better, I was able to stay with her. I wasn't trying to get home so that I could start drinking. I wasn't sneakng drinks. I was WITH her.

    8) When she got discharged from the hospital tonight, I was sober. I could drive her home. I could pick up her medicine. I was so glad for us to be back home and that was a pure joy. It wasn't sullied by the desire for a drink.

    I was sober. I was sober. I was sober.

    Unexpected benefits.

    Heidi
    "I dwell in possibility" Emily Dickinson

  2. #2

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    Thank you Heidi for sharing your experience with us. I am so happy to hear your daughter is OK.

    I've often thought about my mom's health and my ability to react when something (inevitably) goes wrong. Being there for a loved one is an important, crucial benefit. Thank you again.

  3. #3
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    Heidi, I am very happy for you...but of course you have my prayers regarding your daughter.

    It is astounding how much we used to let our unhealthy behaviors keep us from actively participating with our loved ones and even in our very lives.

    What a great feeling of gratitude you have expressed here! I am sure your daughter was grateful for your complete presence as well.

    Thank you for being an active participant on SROL so I and countless others can learn from you!

    Be well.

    “Woe to the thinker who is not the gardener but only the soil of the plants that grow in her”


  4. #4
    HeidiM's Avatar
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    Default

    J-La: being able to be there when our loved ones need us is something we all want. I feel very fortunate that I found SMART and recovery when I did. Thanks.

    LobsterTank: I know that you have family health issues going on right now as well and I especially appreciate your kind words. Thanks.
    "I dwell in possibility" Emily Dickinson

  5. #5
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    Wonderful Heidi

    Sorry that your daughter went through that, but very glad she is OK now.

    Heart warming benefits
    What got me sober was trying to get sober. Every time I lapsed, picked up, drank, I was thoroughly beaten. I thought at those times "there is no hope for me" Yet, when I had recovered from those thoughts just a little, I thought "have another go!" It was a lot of little sparks, rather than a flame, that got me here.

  6. #6
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    Default

    Good on you Heidi. We can actually experience our lives when we are sober. We sleepwalk through it when we are drunk.

  7. #7

    Default I feel ya

    Quote Originally Posted by HeidiM View Post
    I've been sober and active in SMART for 5 years. One of the things that I have learned is that I often find "unexpected benefits" to my decision to move into recovery.

    Recently, my daughter had an infection that went septic and she was in the hospital for 3 days. We were very worried about her as her fever went up and down. Fortunately, the sepsis was in an early stage and the antibiotics worked. That's the really terrific news: she's better and we are home again.


    When you are in the hospital (I stayed with her), there is a lot of time for thinking and I realized that I was experiencing some unexpected benefits of sobriety.

    Here's my story:

    1) when my daughter woke me early on Wed. morning to say that she was in a lot of pain, I was sober. I wasn't hungover. I was able to concentrate and think of how to help her.

    2) When I took her to the doctor's at 11, I was sober. I hadn't been sneaking drinks. I could drive. I wasn't hungover. I could focus.

    3) When the doctor was unclear about whether to take her to the ER or not, I was able to ask her questions. I was clear headed.

    4) When my "gut" told me that something was really wrong, I was able to drive her to the ER because I had not been drinking. My daughter was in a great deal of pain and out of it. I was able to interact with the medical personel in a proactive way.

    5) When she was admitted to the hospital, I was able to stay with her. I wasn't secretly wanting to go home so that I could start my drinking. I wasn't secretly sneaking wine into water bottles and sipping it, hoping no one would notice.

    6) I was sober and alert when my daughter's condition worsened that night in the hospital (good thing I was able to be there - because I was sober).

    7) As she got better, I was able to stay with her. I wasn't trying to get home so that I could start drinking. I wasn't sneakng drinks. I was WITH her.

    8) When she got discharged from the hospital tonight, I was sober. I could drive her home. I could pick up her medicine. I was so glad for us to be back home and that was a pure joy. It wasn't sullied by the desire for a drink.

    I was sober. I was sober. I was sober.

    Unexpected benefits.

    Heidi
    The last time I saw my mom she asked me to stay longer in the hospital but I told her I had to go because I had my drugs in the car waiting for me and I just didn't want to bother with it I will always always always regret that
    Last edited by HughK; August 3, 2017 at 8:28 PM. Reason: Removed duplication

  8. #8
    HeidiM's Avatar
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    Default

    Desuro, I'm sorry to hear that. I hope you can be kind to yourself about it. You made a mistake but we are all human and we all make mistakes at times. Take care.
    "I dwell in possibility" Emily Dickinson

  9. #9
    HughK's Avatar
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    Well said Heidi.

    It is a common aspect of Addictive Behaviour - was for me.

    At least you are here Desuro, in, and seeking, ACTIVE recovery

    Heidi gave us all an insight into the possibilities of that
    What got me sober was trying to get sober. Every time I lapsed, picked up, drank, I was thoroughly beaten. I thought at those times "there is no hope for me" Yet, when I had recovered from those thoughts just a little, I thought "have another go!" It was a lot of little sparks, rather than a flame, that got me here.

  10. #10

    Default

    Heidi, thank you for this reminder of the unexpected benefits of sobriety. I sometimes find myself slipping into thoughts like, "Well, it wouldn't REALLY affect my family if I picked up again..." That is FALSE. Thanks for sharing your experience, and I hope your daughter is on the mend.
    Every warrior has her kryptonite. Alcohol is mine.

  11. #11

    Default

    Heidi, this is really inspiring. I think your approach to sobriety- what you CAN do now that you're sober, not what you CAN'T do (drink!)- is one that will help me maintain my own motivation, as the urges sneak back on me. And those urges are really sneaky!
    Thank you again.

  12. #12
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    Default

    Love this. thanks for the inspiration!

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