New Beginning by Peter Marinelli
I was in another hallway on another day of being beaten down by alcoholism and drug addiction.
I knew this was the end and I was going to probably die at the hands of alcoholism. It was made crystal clear to me on this particular day. My body was dying and my hope was gone. If I live to be 100 years old I will never be as old as the day God separated me from alcohol for the last time in 1988.
I weighed about 30 to 40 pounds less than I way as I write this, eyes sockets were sunken and black, and I was dehydrated and well undernourished.
I had been living in hallways and roaming the streets of lower Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn, NY, always on the run with no energy to walk.
By this time in June of 1988 I had been to six treatment centers and managed a total of two days sobriety. I had been to AA meetings and some wonderful folks tried to help. They told me don’t drink and go to meetings. I kept thinking I know they mean well, but I wish I could just stop. I can, one way or another get to a meeting, but it was the staying stopped part that I couldn’t accomplish. Each time I walked away thinking even AA doesn’t work. My religious upbringing didn’t work either. Nothing worked up until this point and I thought I was really doomed.
How did this happen why did this happen?! I thought. Doesn’t this happen to other people? Why me, what did I do wrong?!
On this particular day as I was dying it was to be the beginning of a life of contentment, peace and sobriety. How dark it is before the dawn. On that day back in 1988, in this very special and extremely painful moment, something happened that I never experienced before. It was to change my life forever. I begged God from the bottom of my heat to take me from this. I didn’t ask for help or for guidance but to take me from this as I can’t do it anymore. It may have been as honest and pure as I had been since being an infant. I had no more reservation nor did I have any lurking notions that I could beat this “thing” on my own. And it was the first time since I could remember that I didn’t want to die.
Years of alcoholism and addiction, years of pain and misery, years of humiliation and degradation were changed in one instant.
God interrupted my death that day and rescued me from the dungeon of addiction and placed me in my seventh treatment center. I was given a mustard seed of willingness to do anything to get well. This time I held on to anything that was given to me to get well. And as God always provides, teachers kept showing up and their message was clear and inspiring. And recovered men and women kept showing up, and this Sacred Fellowship become a band aid on an open wound. They took care of me. They were a reflection of God’s love and mercy. Little by slowly I began to awaken. That was over twenty three years ago and will never forget it and will always be there when someone reaches out for help.
Chop wood, carry water