This time next week i’ll be in another continent, celebrating my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. 50 years. And of all the gifts i could them, i think the best would have to be: a bucket of diamonds. But the second best gift would definitely be…gold plated bacon.
But the best gift of all the gifts i can afford is, of course, my sobriety.
Many years ago, i went to college in the same town where my grandparents lived, so i was the one who had to telephone my mother to tell her that her father had passed. i called her at 4am and told her she should sit down. She said immediately, “Oh god, you hit someone drunk driving.”
My family has many alcoholics on both sides. Every year when i went fishing with my dad, he would remind me that his father was a “skid row bum” and that my maternal grandfather was an alcoholic and that alcoholism is genetic. Then he would gently ask me where i was at with my drinking.
While i may not be able to afford a bucket of diamonds or gold plated bacon, at least i can give my mother the peace of mind in her later years that if the phone rings at an unusual hour it’s not her son telling her he killed someone while drunk. And at least i can give my dad a couple of fishing trips where we can share thoughts happier than his fears over my drinking problem.
i would never advocate getting sober for anyone other than yourself, but that doesn’t mean those close to you can’t enjoy it as well.