Hope for Christmas

He’d been trying this “AA thing” for months now – years if you count that time the court made him go after the DUI, like a month of sharing his feelings was going to make a difference. He shared all the time with his friends at the bar and they really understood him.

“go through the book” they said. There is no way a book written that long ago could help him – he’d read on the internet all the cult like behaviors and the pushing of the book on people. He refused to be brainwashed that easily, he wasn’t stupid.

They also said get a sponsor but all the girls he asked said no, so when he found that guy with a Harley, now that was something he wanted, wanted real bad. But that guy just wanted to go through the book too, and all that talk about God – no more preaching, thank you. So the latest guy didn’t say much at all and just listened when he whined about how awful life had been treating him – that’s all he every wanted. But why go to meetings for that… One more drunk and he was back again, there has to be a trick to this thing. Sponsorship, meetings, sharing… ugh…

One night at the speaker and potluck meeting (he only went for the really great Swedish meatballs that pretty girl made) he heard a guy from share about being of service making all the difference. “Great,” he thought “now they want me as slave labor” But he volunteered that night for the Christmas Alcathon, just to see if this would make a difference.

So now he had to go to other meetings, where people sat and talked about the planning of this event – there were some pretty girls there and it wasn’t as bad as hearing about all the feelings and bad day shit people shared in meetings. Maybe this is the key, service and helping other people.

The commitment started in September, almost every other week he had to meet to discuss this holiday thing. The more he attended the more involved he became. Before he knew what he was doing he was back up on the food tables and designing flyers to ask members for different dishes to pass.

It helped that he had met a girl, Becky, she was there every other week too. They’d both get there early and chat, and stay after – sharing smokes on the steps and just talking without a care in the world. Just the other night he had gotten a small peck of a kiss from her before he left for home – he knew she was the one. Texting, sexting and chatting occurred regularly – life had taken on new meaning.

The holidays were approaching and Thanksgiving brought disaster – Becky didn’t show up and suddenly didn’t answer his calls or texts. He was really worried and no one had heard a thing. Here he was getting emotional and attached, this kind of thing never happened when he was drinking – he should know better. Others in the program tried to make him feel better; “Maybe she’s going through a hard time” or “she’ll be back before you know it”

The next day they found her – died in her apartment of an overdose. He broke – the tears fell in a river and he locked himself in his apartment. No amount of AA jargon was going to get him to feel better or make the pain go away – only Becky could do that… how could she do this to him. Why didn’t anyone stop her, how can the world go on?

He got through the holidays sober – well, not drinking or using – just going from place to place in a fog of despair and loneliness. Many people showed concern and tried to get him to feel better, but nothing was doing it. Every night he’d think about her and if he went to meetings he’d share about here and how devastated he was. His sponsor convinced him to get busy again with the Christmas Alcathon – so he did, reluctantly. He was just going through the motions, waiting for it all to be over.

One night on his way home from his crappy job he stopped at the Circle K and the bottles called to him. He could almost taste the sweet whiskey and feel it going down his throat…. but he persevered and went home that night – not talking to anyone about that sudden strong craving.

The next day again, the bottle sang out to him – and this time he just let go. That’s what they were always telling him in meetings anyway ‘Let go and let god” maybe this was God’s solution for his dilemma. He got good and drunk that night, and smoked a little weed too. The next day there were no repercussions, not one… he didn’t even have a headache. Maybe he was blowing this thing all out of proportion and he wasn’t really an alcoholic after all.

He didn’t drink or use again for a week, everything was fine – he didn’t even have to fight the thoughts that came to him – he just thought “maybe later” and he moved on. He didn’t tell his sponsor or his group about that night – why bother them if he’s not a “real alcoholic” after all, maybe he could show them how to get better.

The Christmas Alcathon was only a few days away he kept all his commitments to the event and would be in charge of the main food table – everyone thought he was doing so much better since Becky passed and were so glad to see him active again.

Christmas eve with his family and the drama and violence that usually surrounded it – he deserved a drink, he knew he did. So he got drunk as a skunk and even managed to score some acid – which he decided to save for the next night, God knew he would need it at that boring party. Then the thought occurred to him “maybe I should share my trip!” Maybe all those fellows in AA just need to be set free and see they can really handle their liquor and drugs.

He reached out to his dealer and got a bunch more for tripping and found an old friend that could whip up some pot brownies. A trip to the liquor store for some more booze and he picked up a ton of those small shot bottles to take with him – there’s going to be a punch bowl. He was ready for the holiday event of the year.

It was easier than he thought to spike the punch, he slipped in a few bottles and all the acid he had gathered – this was going to be a hell of a night. A Christmas that everyone would remember, and most would likely thank him.

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