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Grapevine : April 2011
wasn't alone. The panic attack eased and from then on, I tried to be cou- rageous. Six months into sobriety, someone told a joke. The sound of my own laughter caught me off guard and I knew I was getting bet- ter. How long had it been since I was able to laugh? There have been ups and downs over the past five years, but the downs aren't nearly as bad as when I was a slave to booze. At about two years sober, I fell in love with a man from one of my meetings. We planned to have a baby together, and moved into our new house when I was a month pregnant. At three months pregnant, I came home to find a Dear John letter. Mike had decided he wasn't ready to do the second family thing after all, and needed to go off to Ire- land to find himself. I began praying that he find serenity wherever he is and realized the compassion that re- places what once would have been anger must be a sign of progress in my sobriety. There really is a silver lining to every cloud. I thank my Higher Power for having brought Mike and me together. With him at my side, I found the courage to buy a little house in the country, where I still live with my children. More impor- tantly, our union brought about a de- lightful little boy who just celebrated his second birthday. AA has given me a life I could only dream of. It has allowed me to become the person I am today: A loving mother, award-winning jour- nalist and a reliable, trustworthy friend. I am reminded how blessed I am every time my kids smile and say the words I never heard, never deserved to hear, as a drunk. "You're the best mom in the whole world." I was given that second chance I so desperately prayed for in the ER that awful day five years ago. With the help of AA, I don't intend to blow it. I hope I never again become cocky enough to believe I'm "all better." "Yes, I still need those meet- ings," I tell the friends who will never understand what it means to be an alcoholic. "And that's OK with me." S.E.B. East Hawkesbury, Ontario IsatinthatER convinced my little boys would grow up without me. Suddenly, I became desperate for another chance, just one more chance to do whatever was necessary to watch my babies grow up. aagrapevine.org 33