I reached my 4th birthday of sobriety right in the middle of the Covid outbreak. When the shut-down began, the AA groups were also shut down. Some of them Zoomed, but that seemed weird. Besides, I was zooming all day every day for work and if I could choose to zoom or not, I always chose the “or not.”
Covid was tragic in one way or another for almost everyone, and addicts were quite frankly tested. But… I stayed sober. I wonder how sometimes. I wonder why did I make it through these isolating times? What makes me so special that I’ve come out of this epidemic “unscathed” more or less?
I don’t have an answer, but I can tell you a tool that continues to make a significant difference when I play with the idea of having just one glass of wine or just one joint. I have these tattoos. A lot of people don’t approve of my tattoos. A lot of people ask when I’m going to stop tattooing myself. Do I really need to ink myself every year? A lot of people don’t understand why I would do such a thing.
In the book of Deuteronomy 6:4-9, it reads:
Hear, O Israel: The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. 5You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. 6Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart.7Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. 8Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead,9and write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
I write (tattoo a buttlerfly/ies as a reminder. I need a reminder because I forget. Scripture tells us to put them on our hands and fix them on our forehead because the author knew that people forget. Sometimes we forget a lot. But the butterfly, no I mean butterflies, remind me that I have chosen to live a new life. I have made the choice to allow my life as an addict fall away and I chose to lock my addiction in a tomb. I have made the choice that with the help of God, I am born anew. I call that resurrection. There’s a reason why I had my tattoo inked on my forearm for me to be constantly reminded every single day. The reason is I can’t imagine holding a glass of wine, with that tattoo glaring at me, leading me to “remember him.” I’m not alone… never was… and never will be. That goes for you too.