As many of you may know, probably through my Twitter content, someone very close to me has been going through a really horrendous and horrible time.
This time has also been challenging for me, as it's been so hard watching someone I love struggling, and aside from being there to comfort and support, not being able to do much.
It's also been one of the toughest things I've had to face since getting sober.
Normally, I would have reached for a bottle of rum, and some (lots of) beers, in order to cope & deal with the situation and suppress the pain.
But being over two years sober now, the thought hasn't crossed my mind once.
In fact, not wanting or needing to drink has been one of things that has got me through.
And more importantly, allowed me to be of service to someone I love.
Alcohol messes with your inner peace and strength
You see, alcohol gave me:
Fake interest in others
Fake inner peace
Nothing was really real.
I created a fake reality for myself.
During painful situations, like watching my Mum die, I escaped into a alternate universe of booze, drugs and casual sex, where I didn't have to face the pain and anguish I was feeling.
So having to actually FEEL pain and anguish has been a new experience for me.
It's an experience that has weighed heavy on me at times but has also allowed me to grow. To experience life, properly.
The life changing event they’re experiencing is heartbreaking to see, especially first hand, but their strength has inspired my own.
Practicing silent, internal strength whilst taking care of someone who is suffering should not be underestimated.
By keeping it together, whilst not physically showing it, will relieve any burden they may feel they've placed upon you.
This is not something I would have actually practiced in the past.
I would have physically shown it.
Played the victim.
Only thought of myself, as I downed another beer.
However, I know that although I may be going through a tough time, they're going through much worse and I must be strong in order to help them.
I've had some great support along the way
I’ve been able to practice gratitude despite the circumstances
I’ve had my son to look after to keep things in perspective
I’ve had the clarity to realise that I’ve got an important job to do
I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to look after an amazing person, and the chance to grow up and take some responsibility
And not having to reach for booze has given me more strength than I could have imagined.