Victimhood

imageThere have been many martyrs in the history of our time. Nathan Hale and a man named Stephen come to mind. You might have heard the statement that Hale repeated before his death, ” I have but one regret and that is I have only one life to die for my country.” He was killed by British soldiers in the battle of Long Island, caught by his enemies behind the lines. On the other hand, Stephen was stoned to death for his offensive views and beliefs in Christianity. In those days, you were buried up to your neck and rocks were thrown at your head. Let me be the first to say, in either situation, martyrdom takes courage; self pity and victimhood do not. The insanity of my disease is at its worst when I’m seemingly at my best. Let me have a string of successes, and I’ll start obsessing over why it couldn’t be better. The mind of a chronic alcoholic is torturous while drinking. Then stone cold sober I get the news that a friend back home was found in bed unresponsive by her kids this morning. No note, no warning, just a cell phone by her side. I had lost touch with her over the last couple of years, and I don’t need to know how. It was time, I suppose, for God to call her number. I can take the path of least resistance, forge ahead, and pretend like it doesn’t bother me, but it does. There are times it feels good to play the victim card, even at other’s expense, but I don’t have that luxury now. I held onto that card way too long. So beside every good drink was a reason, and the reason was that I felt sorry for me. There is no way to make it make sense other than its the only way I knew how to live; feel sorry for myself, drink, and repeat. What I learned from working the steps is that if I continue to repeat the same mistakes, I stay stuck and cannot move forward. Friends pass, martyrs die, and the disease of addiction still kills. All I have to do is start feeling sorry for myself, play the victim, and the odds are I’ll pick up a drink again….but for God’s grace, not today….b

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