How a Simple Paradox Changed My Life

“Such is the paradox of A.A. regeneration: strength arising out of complete defeat and weakness, the loss of one’s old life as a condition for finding a new one.” –A.A. COMES OF AGE, p. 46

When I read the statement above, I can’t help but think of the changes that I made for my sobriety.

When sobriety first met my ‘mess-of-self,’ I had lost just about every facet of my existence—family, friends, my home and so on. Like so many others, I had managed to destroy my life with drinking and drugging.

Willing to FINALLY admit defeat against the elixirs and poisons, I chose to attend AA and NA, and, turns out “defeat and weakness” has its perks—although the road to them is a challenge. The blessed outcome of my transformations included:

  • Finding new housing:  I shared at an AA meeting that I need housing. A woman was looking for a roommate and all worked out nicely.
  • Becoming financially solvent: I decided to sell my saving bonds and use that as capital for a small business.
  • Re-establishing a relationship with my child: My son was thrilled that I was sober and we are extremely close now.
  • Making new friends who are also sober: I could no longer afford to ‘hang’ with others who drank and/or drugged. I was lonely at first, but made a concentrated effort to socialize with AA/NA fellows. Bonds soon formed and years later I have two dear friends from that experience.
  • Rescuing a cat! Yes, having a pet was/is important to my need to be connected to nature.
  • Letting my God back into my soul: He was there, waiting.

With these life-fundamentals back in place, I was able to dedicate a good bit of time to AA and NA. My new life had some struggles, yet each day I found more serenity and solace.

My Higher Power journeyed with me as I worked the Steps. He was by my side as I shared at meetings and as I listened intently to my fellows. God carried me when my parents passed away and when I was in an accident with a drunk driver. (How ironic is that?!)

My Lord became my confidante, my best friend and ultimately, my savior.

Daily meetings saw me change from a self-centered and needy person, to one that gladly gives to others.

This insidious disease would NOT win the game called Addiction, nor would it leave me in its destructive pathway. I could almost say that this disease was a catalyst.

The spoiled, outspoken Katie that ‘used’ eventually became a tolerant, intuitive and patient woman—all because of a simple paradox.

Author: Katie H. is a writer, recovering addict, and mother based in Connecticut.