Relapse is Not Required

December 29





“Relapse is not required,” said my sponsor, “though at some meetings they make it seem appealing, all that prodigal drunk treatment.”

“Well, so far, I’m living in the blessing of being convinced the first time,” I told her, “plus what could possibly be out there that’s better than what’s in here?”

“That is the point.  There is so much out there that is faster and bigger, more dramatic and extreme, but I sure have never seen anything better,” she patted my head and I grinned.

“Since I am winning the first time why would I want to lose?” I add just to overstate her point.

“This is the perfect place for those who want it, and all the rest get drunk, but drinking is not required any more than Santa has to come on Christmas.”


Save pretty words in a jar like candy.



Step 3


Remember that this is a surrender to a friend, a thing filled with humor and humility not a thing filled with shame or humiliation.  As for regret the only one I’ve ever had about step 3 is that I didn’t surrender earlier.  Trying to pull a moose by its antlers across the desert was always a ridiculous endeavor, but a friend will stay close and let you try, always ready to lend a hand if asked, though never stealing the opportunity for me to recognize on my own how foolish I have been.  Hilarity ensues as I explain my thinking and turn the project over to a brighter mind and more able hand realizing then; there is no good reason to pull that big thing across that vast wasteland.  On the way back we chat about platypus and rhinoceros and laugh at how many strange things seem like bright ideas in the quiet space of even a great brain.  I have avoided surrendering fearing the loneliness and defeat.  Struggling alone with my torment was lonely; turning myself over to my best friend keeps me in the very best company.




You are reading selections from Sober on the Way to Sane and More Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault


About Sherrie Theriault

Sherrie Theriault, writer and outsider artist lives in northwest New Jersey where she writes villain-free fiction for children and young adults, creates coloring books for all ages, writes daily inspiration books for the recovery community and has other works of collected poetry; also adult fiction. Books available on include the following: Cala Mae The Deep Dark Day In The Congenial Chronicles The Holland’s Adventure Fill Me In Fill Me In, Too Filled In Sober on the Way to Sane More Sober on the Way to Sane Lines from My Life More Lines from My Life On-Liners to Live By My Sponsor Said… Elissa: Queen of Carthage Was Love Lost Order of Protection The Story Precedes the Question Can You See? What the Birdies Told Me about You What the Birdies Told Me about You Coloring book The Enchanting Dog Sherrie’s books are available at Blue Stockings, Manhattan, NY, The Clinton Book Shoppe, Clinton, New Jersey, Giovanni’s Room, Philadelphia, PA, Easy Does It in Long Beach, CA and The Latest Thing in Costa Mesa, Ca. You can find Sherrie’s art work at Hang-Ups Gallery in Allentown, PA or online at: Please feel free to contact her there if you have any questions.
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One Response to Relapse is Not Required

  1. I was thinking this yesterday on a two-hour drive. I’m 4 months sober, 22 years old. My rock bottom was getting drunk at a dive bar every day and if not driving home, sleeping with a stranger. I thought, I’m only 22, when will I relapse? like it is inevitable. Thank you for the reminder that I don’t have to.

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