By Bob Weaver

It was the morning after Christmas and a night of drinking and "celebrating" that I raised my head to bump it on the underpinning of a couch. I had some vomit on my shirt and I had urinated in my pants.

My head felt as big as Australia and I was sick and weak.

I had passed out under the couch looking for a hidden bottle of vodka.

Pulling my bones together, I put on a jacket and climbed the steps to an upstairs deck to settle myself in a chair to watch the rising sun, a stillness in the chilly winter air looking across the West Virginia hills.

It had been a long time since I watched the rising sun, much too busy.

It was on this morning I had an epiphany, a moment of clarity, unbridled from the mechanism from which alcoholics perpetuate their addiction - denial and delusion.

Denial being conscious lying to protect ones need to drink, and delusion, actually believing the lies.

I have come to believe it is a rare occasion to have such moments of clarity, they are harsh, fearful and guilt-ridden.

On that morning, I knew beyond any doubt that I was a real alcoholic, and by my own devices, the best thinking or intentions I had put together had not been enough to return me to controlled drinking or sober living.

I was in the grips of a powerful addiction that had changed me into a person that I deeply disliked, hurting the people I loved.

All my excuses and blaming had led to countless vain attempts to stop drinking.

I sat there in the morning sun, naked with the truth upon me.

I saw myself as I really was, and it was not a pretty picture.

It was on that morning that I was thrust into a willingness to go to any length to become a sober man.

It was on on that morning I began the journey to sobriety that has graced my life for 37 years.

It is, beyond any doubt, the most important moment of my life, made possible by a Higher Power and then the helping voices and efforts of hundreds of people, including my wife.

This holiday, I am filled with gratitude and compassion for those who suffer with addiction, including many in Calhoun, with hopes that they will also have a moment of truth with a willingness to embark on a journey to sobriety.

It was after getting sober I spent the next 20 plus years starting and administering treatment centers for alcoholics and addicts, before starting the Hur Herald 20 years ago and serving as a Calhoun commissioner for 18 years.

During that time, I was directly or indirectly involved with the treatment of about 13,000 alcoholic/addicts, serving as president of the West Virginia Association of Drug and Alcohol Counselors, and conducted about 100 weekend retreats for recovering people.

Hur Herald ©from Sunny Cal
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