One Step at a Time


Sobriety is never a done deal. Just when I think I’ve got some time under my belt, I wake up and realize that once again I’m dealing with frustration. It’s just that now I don’t drink and I need to come up with an alternative.

I’ve been hiking the Appalachian Trail. Left beautiful NM blue skies to walk under snow, rain, sleet and hail, through mud and rocks the size of cars, to follow my dream. It’s kind of like walking up and down a mountain eight times a day, then stopping to set up my tent in a nice shade tree area near a stream, then getting up the next morning and doing it all over again. Once a week I walk to I 25 (relatively speaking) and get a week’s worth of groceries from the gas station convenience store and hike back to the Appalachian Mountains and go up and down till I eat that up and need some more.

It nourishes my soul. Just me and my Higher Power out there. Beauty around every bend, challenges I’d never try in my real life become just another step in the journey.

Until everything goes wrong. This time it’s my hip. I can barely walk. Each step is painful. The ER Dr. said it’s not broken, just an overuse injury.

Frustration is my clue that I haven’t surrendered. It’s the way I know my ego is still in charge. “Wait a minute. I’m an old lady super hero! Not a crippled up loser who can’t go on.” My Higher Power ALWAYS knows what’s best for me. I just don’t want my HP messing with my plans.

I surrender and then take it back until I absolutely recognize the same quality that brought me to my knees when sobriety became more important than drinking.

So here I am. In Colorado. Recovering at my youngest son’s house, going to a daily AA meeting a few miles away. Back to one wobbly step at a time. (This time with crutches.) Looking for the beauty in this situation.

My family wants me to just relax and take it easy. The backyard is a sea of green and flowers. My daughter-in-law fixes fabulous gourmet meals. By focusing on each step I go slower and see the bees, listen to my breath, notice the way the wind moves in the trees.

I learn in many ways it’s much easier to give than it is to receive. Thank you, God, for this opportunity to feel loved and cared for. I truly am grateful that You have once again invited me into Your world.

I don’t feel an urge to drink to take away the pain. My HP is holding on tight to me. Just for today. With my right foot, then my left foot, one step at a time. Thy will, not mine, be done.

Colleen Y.