Click image to go to a site with interesting sleep facts

As I write this blog I’m still going through changes with my new life of sobriety. I don’t know if anyone in the blogosphere have had any experience with this change, but thought I’d relate mine to you.

My biggest problem is sleep. Probably because I’d use alcohol to put me to sleep for many years. My issue is I wake up 6 – 8 times a night. I can’t sleep more than 2 hours at a time and sometimes much less.

There’s and app for that

I created an app so I could track the amount of times I wake up as by morning I don’t want to “feel” I woke up a lot during the night and perhaps it was just a perception. Below is last night’s sleep and wake times. The hours on the right are the amount of hours from when I woke the last time to the point I woke the next time.

As you can see, I didn’t have good sleep last night.

My wake time for Monday 8/30/2021

I wonder if this is due to my drinking at night for 6 years straight or something else. My family doctor prescribed me some sleep meds, but as you can see, they didn’t seem to help last night.

Sleep isn’t everything, but it is important, it also is needed for a productive day.

Know that I have no complaints, but just some questions. I have a great life and leave soon for a trip to visit a friend for a few days. I probably won’t write while there, but if I have time I will.

Have a happy, productive and restful day!


Let me ask the question, “If you are a Christian then how did you become an alcoholic”? I’m sure some have wanted to ask me that question. Anyone can get to the point of being an alcoholic. But the question is a good one and I hope to answer it here, in fact in the next sentence.

I have no idea!

Probably not the answer you wanted.

Just as a reminder, you can look under my Faith tab and read my conversion experience. As a quick summary, I’ll let you know that I was radically changed after a simple prayer. No, not a prayer at a an alter call, but a simple prayer in a random place. I just said, “God, I love you”. I even remember thinking to myself that I had never said that before. Fast forward 3 months… My life had changed so radically I had a panic attack as I didn’t know who I was anymore. I got myself off all drugs and alcohol. I realized I could pray and KNOW that God heard my prayer, unlike before this moment of major change in my life. I had an unexplained desire to read the Bible. The thing you need to know was that no one knew of this conversion. It happened alone with no one around. So all of these changes happened independent of anyone telling me to do something because now I was a Christian.

Once again, the last paragraph was a quick explanation of the day I changed from a worldly lost young man, to suddenly finding myself in a new Kingdom with a new Lord, and a gracious savior, Jesus Christ.

Fast forward to 10 years ago

It had been 30+ years since I had a drink of any alcohol. Drinking came slowly for me, like the proverbial frog in a pot of water. If he was put into boiling water, he would try to get out, but if you bring it to a boil slowly, He just sits there and dies (not that I have ever tried that, but the analogy is true to this post). I had a drink with a friend. That was the beginning. I then drank sometimes on the weekend. Then every weekend. I changed from beer to Vodka as I figured it was less calories.

One day, I decided to have a drink during a weekday. I had gone through a lot of things and just needed a break. I did this without my lovely wife’s knowledge. Then I started to drink other weekdays. I finally had stopped and then was away for a month for work and figured I had nothing to do at night, so I’d just have a drink. That was the beginning of drinking everyday. Not much, maybe 2 – 3 shots a day.

The storms of life never stopped

Back to the question, “If you are a Christian then how did you become an alcoholic? The Gospel of Matthew has this quote from Jesus…

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand”.

Matthew 7:24-26:24

Notice that the storms came on those who build their house on the rock and on those building their house on the sand. It doesn’t say the storms were less for one or the other. The same storms came, but the difference was the foundation was built.

The storms came in my life one by one and even though I had built my house on the rock, I chose to react to those overwhelming storms by drinking alcohol. It was my choice and it got way out of hand. The 2 -3 shots, became 6 – 8 and then 9 – 10 and finally 12 – 14 a night.

So where was God during this time of overwhelming stress and drunkenness? Right where he had always been since that first day when I told Him that I loved Him. He was still in my heart and still guiding me though this mess I created. He didn’t leave me, He just chose to let me get to the point that I knew I couldn’t handle things in my life with drinking every night and then, like a gentle whisper, tell me that I needed help. Wait, what? He had delivered me from my past issues over and over again, but this time He didn’t. He showed me I needed help from a hospital for detox, to my work giving me a month off to recover with no calls and no pressure. He could have chose to set me free from alcohol in an instant, but He chose the better way. His ways aren’t our ways and His thoughts aren’t our thoughts.

The better way

In Matthew 26:53 Jesus said about his coming crucifixion, “Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels?” God could have given Jesus 12 legions of angels to set him free from the agony and torture and death He was about to experience, but that wasn’t the best thing for us. He needed to die and give himself as a ransom for the world. He also knew just having me easily quit alcohol wouldn’t have been the best solution. Instead he had me write a blog about it, tell my family, friends and everyone in my company. He then provided me a safe place to detox and then allowed me to go home to spend time with my lovely wife and get our marriage on track. He knew what was best.

How did I get into this situation?

It was my choice, it was the wrong choice. If I had to do it all over again, I hope that I’d make a better decision. That said, going through the depths of alcoholism, depression and despair, and being set free to enjoy life, my wife and my life has been such an amazing experience that I never want to go back to drinking and know I cannot ever go back.

It is like having a third chance at life. 1) birth. 2) rebirth. 3) set free from a millstone around my neck.

I hope I answered the question I posed at the top of this post. I hope you will never get to where I was, but if you are or know someone who is, Jesus is nearby and wanting to help with a cry of your heart. Help may not come by the means you choose, but remember my quote from an earlier post, “God will not keep you in prison forever”. It took me 8 years, it might take you a simple heartfelt prayer.

Jesus said, “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” I am so glad He is with us and that he forgives and restores!


I am now 13 days sober. I am happy with the progress I’ve made so far. My lovely wife and I have reconnected to a place we haven’t been since before we had kids. We haven’t had kids at home for a few years, but the alcohol was a major issue / distraction.

Life at home

I have an opportunity most people never get. I am at home with no responsibility from my work. I was on call everyday for many years. Now I have staff that take call, but I am the final fall back as I am in charge of my department. So I have to sleep knowing I may get called that night. Most nights I don’t get called, but just knowing it may happen is an issue since I have been on call for so long. Also during the day I would get calls or support tickets coming in many times a day. Since I work from home now due to COVID, it has really caused a lot of stress. Let me rephrase that… I do work from home, but that really wasn’t the issue, it was my drinking every night starting between 4 – 5.

I have realized that my life consisted of work and drinking and not much room for my lovely wife. Maybe we would send 30 minutes together at night, but most nights I’d go to bed at 6:00 and go to sleep by 8:00.

I was so selfish and I didn’t see it was due to my drinking.

During this time of rehab / getting my life back on track, I work from 7am – 10am. That time is specific and not changeable as my managers has put those limits on me. They also don’t want me to take any calls and don’t want me calling anyone. This has been an amazing time for my lovely wife and I to reconnect.

From 10am to 9:30pm my lovely wife and I are together non-stop. That seems like a lot, but we had always been our own best friends. We loved talking and spending time together. All of that stopped with my drinking. We never thought we’d ever get it back. Many times over the past 8 years we both have said, if we can’t live together, we wouldn’t leave the other, but we would just live separate lives under the same roof. It got bad at times. My drinking didn’t make my life better as I had thought, it made it worse. I was more tired, more angry, more unhappy, and less thoughtful. Inside I knew all of these things, but I just pushed it down so that I could continue to drink.

The time with my lovely wife over the past week has been a real eye opener. We still have it! We still love talking and spending time together. We are happier than we have been in a long time. I have stopped watching TV, mindlessly being on the Internet, mindlessly looking at my phone, etc. That time is now my time with my lovely wife. Honestly my relationship with her is the only relationship that really matters in the end. We have gone from saying, we will live separate lives in the same house, to having lives that have quality and hope.

I compare the past few weeks to taking the red pill in the Matrix. I suddenly saw the damage I was doing to my relationships and myself. Now the sky is the limit as I have an extra 5 hours a day in my life that I didn’t have when I was drunk.

I love my life!


I stood on a sidewalk having a panic attack hundreds of miles from home. It was like a nightmare where you are all alone in a strange place with no hope.

That said, I had my phone and my lovely wife and my friends. As I wrote before, they pulled together to get me home. One moment I was lost and then I was found. Life is, hard, imperfect and difficult, but God never allows us in to be in a bad situation without a solution.

On that sidewalk I cried as I talked to my lovely wife. “I… I.. don’t know what to do. I was so lost and hurt and upset. One day later I was at home with her and in my bed and thankful.

What I found out in detox at the mental hospital is that many people don’t have the support that I have. They have significant other’s that have the same issue that they have and don’t want to change. They have friends that want to egg them into drinking or drugs again or they have no one at all.

I, on the other hand, had my lovely wife and friends that would come help at a moment’s notice. In fact while I stood on that sidewalk of hell feeling like I was losing my mind, a friend called who had been up since 3:30am and worked all day and said, “I’m on my way to pick you up.” At 4:00pm he was going to drive 4 hours each way to get me home. Who has friends like that (rhetorical question)? Who has a wife that would stop everything to save her husband in crisis. Oh, did I tell you that my lovely wife is disabled with migraines and a bad back and neck? I’m not saying that people like that don’t exist, but I had no idea that they existed in my life.

I’ve been home now for 3 days. I’ve been sober for 8 days. I am a changed man and I’ll never, but the grace of God, go back to my previous life.

Finally something funnyish that happened to me…

I was on my way to pick up my daughter to go to church, and needed to take some water to drink in the car. I grabbed a bottle an headed to her apartment. When I got there, I went to take a drink… IT.WAS.NOT.WATER…IT WAS VODKA! What a shock. I immediately dumped it on the ground. So here I am, a recovering alcoholic with a mouth full of vodka on his way to church. The irony was funny to me. The good thing was that it was disgusting to me. It didn’t temp me in any way. I hated it and just laughed at the situation. Just so you know, out of convenience, I would fill water bottles with vodka. Now I smell each one before I drink it, LOL.

So here I am on a month long sabbatical from my work, chilling, enjoying my lovely wife and trying to get my afternoons end evenings back on track. She goes everywhere with me and will continue to do so until the month is over (and longer if she wants).

I am stronger that I was a week ago, but I know that I am very weak and that sin crouches around the corner to pounce on me.

Luke 22:31 – 32 “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat,  but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.

I hope that someday I can move on and, “strengthen my brothers” by the fire I have gone through.

The Shock and Awe of Detox

What can I say! I was not even closely prepared for what I was about to experience. I assume others might have been better prepared; but I had to just run into this head first, so that I wouldn’t change my mind. It was shocking to me at the beginning, and such a blessing to me at the end.

6:00am – My friend and coworker picked me up to make the 3.5 hour drive to the hospital. Fortunately, we had an office nearby the hospital and he had some work to do there, so it worked out well. It was an uneventful drive.

10:45am – We arrived at the hospital. People from work had gotten me 2 bags full of things like games, puzzles, toys, food, etc to help me get through the days. I was told I’d be at a hospital for 5 days detoxing and basically sitting in a room with nothing to do, so they tried to help me through that time with tons of things to pass my time. Needless to say, I never even opened the bags and I was so wrong on what I was about to go through. If I had known, I wouldn’t have gone.

My friend left and I was in a small entryway and told them I was there for detox. They took all my bags through a small window. They then told me to give them my wallet, phone and anything else in my pockets. They then let me into the lobby to fill out the paperwork. I then asked for my phone back and they said I wouldn’t get it back until I left the facility. Wait, what? No phone, no laptop, nothing.

What have I gotten myself into?

The next six hours were spent sitting in a 6 x 6 room with three chairs. From time to time people came in. Once to do a Breathalyzer, once to give me lunch, once to interview me and then to deal with insurance. Finally at around 4:00, I get to go to my unit.

What came next rocked my world. I was brought onto the unit and asked to sit while they brought my bags from the front. Then they had me give them my belt. Then the strip search. Once again, what was happening? I’m not a thief. Am I in prison? Then it came to me, I’m in a mental hospital! Next they went through every item of my suitcase and removed everything I couldn’t have. Nothing with a rope or string. No shoe laces (fortunately I had on sandals). My razor, gone. My pillow, gone. My Mom’s cross neckless that I’ve worn since she died, gone. No phone, no watch no laptop, no iPad. My room had no shower curtain, no door for the toilet. It had two beds, two shelves and a sink.

My life was about to change dramatically and I knew it.

My day started at 6:00am the next morning. I got up off of my 2″ thick mattress on a wooden bed and a 2″ pillow and got my toiletries from the nurses station along with towels. Showers, morning meds distributed by a nurse, then breakfast. Doors locked to the rooms at 7:45am and didn’t open until 8:00pm. They had us line up and did a roll call. “Here” each person yelled when their name was called out. We then went single file to the cafeteria with a tech in the front and in the back of the line. The cafeteria was at 60 degrees. The food was very good, and then back to the unit – single file. Four outdoor breaks a day. Group meetings with lunch and more meetings, dinner, showers, meds, and finally bed at 10:00pm. Darkness. No TV, no media, no phone. Just alone with my thoughts. Would I fall asleep or just lay there in the dark? A woman there told me of 8x4x8. Count up to 8 breathing in, count to 4 and then count to 8 as you exhale. It is an amazing way to fall asleep.

The first 24 hours were shock. Going from full freedom to prison was a very difficult experience. However, after I got with the routine and expectations, things went much smoother. There was a nurse there, I’ll call her Meg. She was awesome. If it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t have made it through. She was kind but stern at the same time. She really seemed to trust me and I trusted her. Have you ever seen someone for the first time and felt like you knew them forever? That was Meg. She worked the evenings and that was when I needed help most, especially at the beginning. I was lost and she knew it. She got me an extra blanket that no one else would approve. Why was this so important to me? My pillow was 2″ thick and basically non-existent once I laid my head on it. I took the second blanket and put it under my pillow to raise my head (I have a pinched nerve in my neck). It was hard, but at least I had my head raised. One day they were calling names for evening meds. It was late and I was tired. I mentioned to someone that I wish they would start with the “T’s” rather than the A’s. A few minutes later, Meg called out the people to get meds, and she started with the T’s (it’s the small things).

The people I met were just normal people. From a grandmotherly woman to a woman who looked like she was 15, but was 24. Black, white, and people with 2 legs, 1 leg and no legs. From very shy to VERY extroverted. Few men and many women. Smokers, non-smokers. Happy, sad, and vacant and everything in-between. I really liked everyone there. They were real and just like me, had issues with alcohol and or depression.

I came in scared, I left confident and happy. I detoxed from alcohol. I had been drinking about 13 drinks a day and other than my hands shaking, I had no symptoms of detoxing the whole time. I also detoxed from my phone and computer. I detoxed from the news. I detoxed from having to have the TV on to go to sleep.

I’ve been home 2 days now. Interestingly enough, everyday at 4:00, even without looking at the clock, I hit a wall. I get depressed and anxious. I figure that is because I would drink my first drink around then each day. Yesterday my Lovely Wife said, let’s listen to Christian music and you do your Sudoku and read your Bible and relax. Next things I knew it was 6pm and I was past the difficulty.

My life with my Lovely Wife has gotten so much better. We talk and laugh and enjoy each other. Last night we stayed up till midnight talking (not a great idea as I had an 8:00 meeting this morning, but TOTALLY worth it).

Shock and awe. Awe stands for Awesome, which is what God is. He can turn the worst circumstances into the best life, if we let Him.

He is Awesome!

Heading home

5 days sober.

The title to this post may have shocked you if you read the past several posts. The plan was for me to detox and then go directly into rehab for 4 weeks. That plan fell apart yesterday.

As a side point, I will write about the ups and downs of my 4 days of detox in another post. It was horrifying going in and by the time I left, I was so thankful that I did it.

Back to yesterday…

I’m not sure of the time I left the hospital as I didn’t have my watch on me, but it was probably around 11:00 am. I got in a van to head to the rehab center. On the way there the driver got a call and when he got off he said, “Your going to “Next Steps”. You are going to like that program. Wait, what does that mean I thought. I thought I was going to an inpatient program. I said okay and just went with the flow.

Speaking of “flow”, I have been envisioning this journey as me being on a rowboat on a river without any ores. I’m just going where the river goes and I’ll end up wherever it takes me.

I got to the facility, a nice building with people moving around all over the place. The people were kind. It must have been lunch as I was offered a Hot Pocket which I declined. I settled for some chips.

After the usual Breathalyzer and urine test (about my 5th in 5 days), I was finally taken back to meet with my councilor. He explained what I was going to get myself into. Once again, I’m going into this blind and just going with the flow of the river. He told me that I am in an outpatient program (wait, I thought I was going into an inpatient program). I would be living in a house with 5 other guys and each weekday, going to this building for 6 hours a day for my rehab sessions. I asked why is this different from what I was told. He told me my insurance wouldn’t approve inpatient, so this is a way for them to give me the teaching without me having to pay out of pocket. The company pays for the houses and the insurance pays for the program.

Okay?!? I figured, go with the flow of the river.

I then was given a $50 gift card for groceries for the week and taken to a van full of women. I was never told why I was going with the woman rather than the men, but I told myself, “flow, remember the flow”. Actually the women were a hoot. One was leaving and the others were telling her how much she meant to them. She was probably 50 and they were all 20 somethings. That part was enjoyable. I was then taken to a Kroger that was a mess with little food on the shelves and found enough food to get me through. I then was taken back to the house.

I got to the house I would live in for 30 days. It was a small house with a large backyard. Inside, it was dark and not clean, but not dirty. I asked where my room was and was taken to a back room with 3 beds (this room barely fit 2 beds, let alone three). I was told the guys in the room were leaving that day, but all their stuff was still there and there had been no attempt to pack. They were at work and might move out when they got back. Hmmm.

I took a walk to clear my head and to try and figure out what had happened to me. The rowboat seemed to run aground in the middle of the river. I had no bed and didn’t know when I’d get one. I’m in a house and not a facility. My head began to spin. I’d been 4 days sober and 5 hours out of detox and now I’m living in a house with 5 guys that I didn’t know and with no programs on the weekend and this was Friday afternoon.

I called my lovely wife in a panic. I thought I’d be in a structured program and I’m not. I’m 1 mile from a Kroger with as much alcohol as I wanted to drink. I’m stressed and hopeless.

Let me put it this way: Stress + Panic + hopelessness + no structure = I need a drink.

My lovely wife sprang into action. She tried to call the program and got no response. She called a good friend who called me and asked what he could do, I didn’t have an answer but asked him to try calling the program. Then, as if God had said, “I’ll never give you more than you can handle”, my phone rang from the local office of the program and a woman asking for my lovely wife’s name as they forgot to get it. I was able to tell her that I couldn’t live in this house and I needed inpatient and she said to hold on and she would see what she could do.

Then the unimaginable happened…

The woman called back and said, my insurance didn’t cover inpatient, and told me to just try and talk with my house mates for help. Okay, they aren’t councilors and they are in the middle of their recovery. Not that they can’t help, but seriously, this was their solution? I said no and that I needed out. I told her I am going to get an Uber and head to a hotel and a very good friend will pick me up in the morning and take me the me the 3.5 hours home. I’ll get into an inpatient program in my own state which I’m sure I can. If not, I’d rather do outpatient with my lovely wife than with 5 strangers. Her rely was shocking… She told an alcoholic, 5 days sober, 6 hours out of detox that if I left the program I would fail and end up going right back to my vodka. I was shocked. This program wasn’t there to help addicts, but to get the money from the addicts insurance. At that moment, I knew I made the correct choice. I found a hotel, called and Uber and was gone in 10 minutes.

When I got to my hotel, my lovely wife told me she was working with some coworkers to find me a place to go. As I waited for a call back I finally went into a bag of things my coworkers sent to me for my journey. I couldn’t go through it before now because I reasons I’ll explain in another post. On top of pistachios, games, coloring books was a “box of encouragement”. I opened the box and part of the box was about 1 inch of envelopes sealed with cards inside. A few were cards from individuals, including 2 from chief officers giving me encouragement and saying they were proud of me for taking this step. The others were cards with Bible verses on them or encouraging works and more. Actually there were so many I didn’t get to open them all.

Just a note here, my work is awesome. I’ve been there for 14 years and genuinely have loved my time there. I like everyone there and have had a good relationship with them. But now, I have found out that they are more than coworkers. They are real friends. They could have stopped at the $100 gift card I got before I left, but the emails, texts and card and 2 bags of thing like a blanket, games, food, and so much more, means they are true friends. I am blessed more than I can say. I had thought that I have a couple of friends outside my family, but now I know I have over 100. How much more blessed can one man be.

My lovely wife found a place near our house that is trying to get me into inpatient. We will find out today. If not, we will keep checking. Finally I got in bed at the hotel. It was an emotionally exhausting day. I ended it talking with my lovely wife on speaker phone while lying in my bed. I noticed I was dozing off and told her, but she was fine with just talking. I found out later that I had fallen asleep and she knew it, so she just prayed for me while I slept and still on speaker phone. I’m overwhelmed. She just prayed for me. She wasn’t upset, she didn’t just hang up, but she prayed. We have been married over 35 years and I love her more than I ever have. We have had ups and downs. She dealt with 8 years of my alcoholism with patience and mercy. I wasn’t always nice to her when I was drunk, but she waited. She prayed and waited and now I’m sober for 6 days and she has what she has wanted for years, a sober husband who loves her and would never leave her.

I write this in my hotel and my ride is almost here. I continue in my little rowboat going wherever it leads. By the way, the river is God the Father, the boat is Jesus and the flow of the river is the Holy Spirit. Tell me how I can fail. I can’t fail.

Let’s do another equation: Lovely wife + supportive friends + a God who loves me = total success.

I know life will be hard, but I will not go die easily.

God NEVER keeps you in prison forever (read the story of Joseph in Genesis in the Bibile).

Tomorrow will be the biggest day in my life

Tomorrow I head to rehab. I leave at 6:00 in the morning and I get to the hospital for my 5 day detox around 10:00 am. I am scared but excited. By the grace of God, He waited for me to get to the point when I really wanted this. I wasn’t pushed into it and no one forced me. I realize I’ve used alcohol at night as a crutch. But perhaps I needed a crutch. Some would say, “why didn’t you just trust God”, but evidently I couldn’t at the time. My life, at times has been hell, but everyone has their own hell to walk through and not everyone becomes an alcoholic.

I miss my sister

Tomorrow is also my late sister’s birthday. She was a good sister and always looked out for me. She passed away almost exactly 18 years ago in a scuba diving accident. My parents had just moved into a nice retirement community and that night had friends over. In their discussions, the topic came up of losing a child. My parents said they could never imagine having to go through that. That night I got a call around 11:30 pm. The voice on the other end told me that they found me on the internet and asked if I were her brother. Then he informed me she had died. My life crashed around me. My two brothers lived up north and so I called my oldest and then my second oldest. The second oldest lived in the city that my parents lived in. He went over and told them. All of our lived changed that night.

I got my sister’s computer and read her emails to try and figure out why this happened. Perhaps I should have buried her computer with her and not read about her life, but she lived many miles away and to some extent, we lost touch, though we talked a couple of weeks before she died, which I’m glad about. In one email written 3 days before she died, she wrote her boyfriend and all it said was “10 Days” in big bold letters. She wrote that because her birthday was in 10 days… She died 3 days later.

Second Chance

I don’t have 10 days, I have 1 day. I may not even have that. No one is guaranteed the next breath. My sister had so many plans, but they were over in 30 minutes. She probably didn’t know what hit her as her blood boiled from the bends. I am thankful that I have a second chance for my life. I am thankful for my lovely wife who wants me to go get help. I am thankful that I have a great family and great friends who are praying for me and my lovely wife.

I am thankful, hopeful and happy that I get a second chance, I only wish my sister had one…

T minus 2 days

I head out Monday for detox in a hospital. I am NOT looking forward to it. I do not like the unknown, but have no choice as I am going to do this. I’m tired and know things would not go well with my health if I keep this alcohol thing going.

What am I looking forward to on the other side?

I’d like to start running again. Probably not a marathon, but maybe a half marathon.

I’d like to get back to that 178 lbs, the weight I was at when I started this blog. I’ve been on a diet and have gone from 227 to 210, so I’m getting there. I assume I’ll lose 10 lbs after I stop drinking, so when I return home, I may be down to below 200 lbs.

I really like the outdoors, but my lovely wife can’t do much outside due to migraines. I hope that we both can enjoy time outside when I return home.

I’m really going to be interested in what my work looks like when I return. I am totally cut off from work now. No emails, no alerts, nothing. That was of my own choice and it has already helped. I spent the past two days with my lovely wife and didn’t have to worry I’d get a call, email or text that something was down and I needed to step in.

This I do know, life will be different when I get out. I hope it will be a major change!

God is with me!


#1 – Detoxing from my work

I start my detox from alcohol on Monday. Totally not looking forward to it, but at least it is medically supervised. However nothing is going to be supervised in my mind and half of my addiction is mental. I drink because I’m bored, I drink because I need to go to sleep and I drink because I need to turn my brain off from the stress of the day.

That said, I have already started a type of detox. I took Thursday and Friday off from work to get my affairs in order before I leave. As part of this process I had my coworker remove me from all company group emails. I also deleted all my work apps on my phone, including Zendesk and Teams. I then removed myself from all miscellaneous emails I get from our work databases. Finally, I have begun unsubscribing from various email lists that I don’t really care about anymore. It is amazing how many emails I get and just delete and never went to the bottom of the email and found that tiny “unsubscribe” link.

So this is my first detox and honestly it has be freeing and hard at the same time. I am always connected to work and even more connected than I thought. Yesterday I was unconnected. I sat in my living room and tried to think of things to do and move beyond my work. No emails, no texts, no messages, no phone calls. The silence is deafening. I woke up this morning to 3 emails in my inbox. You did read that correctly, THREE emails.

#2 – Detoxing from alcohol

Obviously this is going to happen. From what I know, I head to the hospital 3.5 hours away on Monday morning and checkin. There is no specific time to checkin, it is like an emergency room, you just walk in and get started. From there I’m in the dark. I know I’ll be there for 5 days and I will be in a room, but that is all I know. It is like starting a journey looking down a very long, dark tunnel where you can’t see the light at the other end. I know nothing of what I’m getting myself into. I do know there is light at the end of the tunnel and I know I’ll be so much happier, healthier and will enjoy life so much more when I get out the other side.

#3 – Detoxing from the internet

My goal when I finally get to rehab will be to detox from the world wide web (such a 90’s term). I wasn’t even going to open my laptop (which I found out I can bring with me). But, since I decided to write this blog daily as a journal, I will have to do that. Other than that, I plan on removing myself from all technology. I won’t look at email, I won’t google, I won’t look at the news. Total technological blackout. This is the first, and probably the only time, I will get to do this. Free my mind from the world of the internet. With things changing daily in the world these days, what will I see when I get back?

I want to change. I need to change. I am beyond done with my current life. My lovely wife’s current “mantra” is, “I will not go die easily”. This has really changed her life. She doesn’t give in to the depression or the struggles of her life. She has become stronger and can handle life much better than ever before. She is the reason I can move down this new direction in my life. My “mantra” has been, “God will not leave you in prison forever”. There are many “prisons” I have been freed from lately. A prisons to me is something from which I have no hope of ever getting free. Alcohol is a prison that I had no hope of getting out. I tried many times, but to no avail. Even a few weeks ago, I had no hope of getting out of this prison. Now I do and I never want to go back. This is my chance to live a victorious life and hopefully help others in the process.

God will help me!

The upcoming change in my life

I have not written on this blog in a long, long time. The reason is because one day I was at home right after a run,, trying to get my dog to come inside. My backyard had a fairly long, and one foot deep ravine going through it. I didn’t pay attention and hit the ravine and as my lower body fell forward, my upper body fell backwards. The end result was that my quad was totally separated from my knee.

Thus the end of my short lived running career and I have come up for a new use for this blog (at least until I might start running again). I’m about to begin a journey that will change my life forever and so I’d like to use this space to document it.

This 30 day journey isn’t something I’m proud of. It isn’t anyone else’s fault but my own. I hate that I’m in this place, but there is nothing I can do about that.

The hidden truth

I’ll being by explaining what I didn’t write in the first paragraph of this post. One reason that I fell that day and had to go through months of pain, surgery and therapy was because I was drunk. Somehow (and I don’t remember why) I had begun to drink after my afternoon runs. Years before I used to have a drinking problem up until my sophomore year in college. That summer I had a major change in my life as described under the “Faith” tab above. Now I had gotten myself back into drinking and the end result wouldn’t be pretty.

Fast forward to today. I am a alcoholic. It is hard to admit this . I have been drinking every evening for 8 – 10 years. I never drank during the day, but that doesn’t change the fact I can’t stop drinking on my own. My lovely wife has known I’ve had an issue for years and was always worried about me. I did hide it from her and everyone for a while, but that didn’t last long.

The journey

No one knew I had a drinking problem other than my lovely wife. No one knew I drank vodka every night for the past 8 years. No one knew this was a problem that I begged God to remove from me. No one knew…

About 2 weeks ago was the first time I told an someone that I had a drinking problem (not using the alcoholic word yet) and he said he would pray for me. Last week I decided to go to my family doctor whom we have gone to for 25 years and let him know that I have this problem. He gave me some meds that would prevent me from feeling the effects of the alcohol. The next morning I took the meds and went through my day. That evening (by the way, my evenings went from 6:00 to 5:00 to 4:00) I drank 8 ounces of vodka and felt totally sober. PANIC ATTACK! For someone who has needed alcohol to get past the stress of the day, this was actually a bad idea.

I knew then that I had a real problem.

The red pill

I had been lying to myself for years. I even told my family doctor that I drank about 8 ounces of vodka a night. Suddenly my eyes were open to my own lies. I realized that I was drinking from 16 – 20 ounces or more of vodka a night, 3/4 of it straight. It was like I took the red pill from Morpheus in the Matrix. Everything became clear.

My lovely wife decided to look up tapering off alcohol and came across a site for substance abuse and rehab. She called them and talked for an hour to a very nice woman about my problem. They said they could help…

The confession

Over a period of time last weekend I went from denial to getting admitted into rehab. I knew I had to come clean with my work as I was going to be gone for a month. I could have just said it was a long vacation or come up with some excuse, but I knew that I had to finally bring my problem into the light. Fortunately I have a secure position at work and am well respected and liked. That is also the worst part… No one knew. No one had a clue. How would they reacI began by telling my staff. I actually cried when I started telling them. Their eyes were wide open in shock when I began to explain, “I’m going to rehab”. We have been so close and they had no idea I had a problem.

An hour later was the big reveal to the chief officers of my company. I told them about going to rehab and they were very gracious. I told my whole story about my hidden addition. They said they respected me for making this major step and that they would support me in any way they could.

Next was telling my colleagues… I called each one ( about 6 people) and said the same thing to each, starting with, “I am just going to tear off the bandaid, I’m going to rehab for alcohol addition”. All were shocked but all were very supportive. Some had stories about themselves I never knew and about people in their family with the same issue.

Finally, I wrote an email to the entire staff. I explained my problem and said I’d be gone a month. It is a big deal to tell people I’ll be gone for a month and will have no contact with anyone or email.

The future

I have no idea of what my future holds. Since I began this matrix moment, I have had so many thoughts going though my head.

What will it be like trying to sleep without alcohol after 8 years?

Will I be able to sleep?

What will detox be like? I’ll be in a hospital for 5 days detoxing and then off to rehab.

What are the health implications to drinking 20 ounces of straight vodka for 8 – 10 years? What about my stomach or esophagus?

No one knows what the future holds, but God alone. He is going to be by my side. He brought me to this moment and will take me through it with the faithfulness He has always shown me. I haven’t been trusting Him and that needs to change.

I hope to write daily of my experience in rehab on this site. My hope is that somehow I can help someone else who is in a similar situation. I am scared of the what the next month holds as it will be a life change that I wasn’t planning on going through. Going from denial to rehab in two weeks is overwhelming.

I know I have to do this, and hopefully I will be able to help at least one other person by being transparent about my decision to move on with my life. Struggling in silence isn’t a solution. Bringing your bad choices and decisions to the light and moving to a better place and future is a solution.

God help me!