This week Needy Helper and DrugRehab.com interviewed me about my sober journey. It was interesting to hear both sets of questions and how similar they were. I suppose it is because a lot of people who are trying to get sober or are newly sober have the same questions about how to be successful with their own sobriety.
The question I found most called to elaborate on after speaking with both outlets was centered on solitude.
What do you do with all this free and seemingly lonely time you have once you are sober?
To answer this, I want to share a story…
My real solitude in sobriety would come a few years into the journey for me. I had recently moved back to Naples and was dating someone long distance. I had known him for about 7 years and we were the best of friends. Naturally, this seemed like a perfect fit.
As time went on we wanted to spend more time together and be closer. I moved out of my parents where I had been temporarily staying and got my own apartment, anticipating he would be there with me on the regular.
However, as fate would have it, I soon came to find out that he had been lying to me about various aspects of his life and lifestyle; to the point that he was essentially living a double life. There were other women, drugs and deceit around what he was doing for a living among many things.
As you can imagine, I was devastated. Here was someone I thought I knew so well, who had completely pulled the wool over my eyes. I still remember falling to my knees, balling crying when he left because I knew it was over and that meant something new would take its place.
Here I was in this new apartment all by myself after we broke up and I sent him packing.
S O L I T U D E.
Mixed with heartbreak: a recipe that could have been disastrous.
This was the first time in my sobriety that I felt more alone than ever. I was scared at first, as most people are. But as I’ve looked back on this time in my life, I realized why God had me there.
In those weeks and months, I decided I was going to take this time with myself to really get to know me. I wanted to know how on earth I could let someone into my life like that. I wanted to know what I really wanted for myself and what made me tick. I felt called to dive deeper than I ever had before into the inner workings of who I am and what my recovery was really about.
So, I started reading the Bible a lot. Praying. Dancing in my living room.
I started reading self-help and personal development books. I found Gabby Bernstein, The Daily Love, A Course In Miracles and Kute Blackson. I went to an intensive coaching weekend workshop with the Handel Group. And, wait for it…
I STARTED WRITING.
I took a class at a community college about writing. Writing was so therapeutic for me. It was like a free form of therapy and I had finally found something I enjoyed that allowed me to go places in my mind and release words that my soul was speaking to me.
Not too long into what would become my writing career, I wrote a vivid piece, which to this day has never been released, about the last night I drank and used cocaine. I only shared it with a few trusted people in my life at the time and they all told me the same thing. “This is really, really good. You could help so many people with this.”
So, I continued to write, alone in my lonesome, solitude. I started calling my apartment and this time in my life “The Incubator.” I knew and understood something bigger was happening and I was willingly allowing it instead of struggling against it.
Soon, inside of it, a phrase kept coming to me.
M I R A C L E S A R E B R E W I N G.
There it was. In the solitude.
My time of solitude and loneliness is exactly why you are reading these words. God had me right where he wanted me and it was the only way to get this signal across to me. He needed my utmost attention.
This is the power of solitude.
So many of us fear being alone because we don’t know how to sit with ourselves. We don’t always like the messages that come across. We are afraid of what we might see or hear if we look at ourselves for long enough.
But the beauty of having seasons of solitude is that those are the times we are being prepared for more. The truth is that sometimes taking a small step backwards is ulitmately what empowers us to take a giant leap forward.
My advice to anyone who is afraid of being alone, whether it be in sobriety or not, is to embrace the time with yourself.
Life happens very quickly and before you know it you could be working a demanding job, going to school, raising a family or building a business where you hardly have time to shower. You will look back and wish you had relished in this time.
So, take the time you have, when you have it, and explore. There is nothing to be afraid of. If anything, there should be some excitement flowing through you at what may be brewing if you just sit and listen for long enough.
Wisdom, infinite wisdom, is seeking to flow through you. Sometimes the only way it can be transmitted is in the silence.
It’s funny because I’m back in a time of much solitude lately and I have been fighting it with every bone in my body. My love of writing, which I found in moments of past solitude, called me to this message, which was prompted by divine interviews this week. And so the story goes…
May we all never for forget, Miracles Are Brewing, always. Namaste.