I met Homer through my Tuesday night meeting. He brings humor and joy to every meeting and every conversation. Homer recently moved to Mississippi and we all miss him. When he asked to contribute to the blog, I was delighted. I appreciate Homer's perspective and vulnerability.
Four hundred and twenty days ago I got sober: Well, I started the process. I went through treatment, started attending meetings regularly, did 90 in 90, and have stayed with the program. My story is familiar, maybe . . . . About seven years ago my wife, and others, told me that: 1., You’re an alcoholic; 2. You are abusing your pain pills; 3. You need to get some help.
I did not take their observations well. “For Gods’s sake. I don’t gamble. I don’t cheat on my wife. I don’t miss work. I don’t go to work drunk. So, what the fuck is with you all?”
For the next four years my wife tried to encourage me to do something about my drug abuse (booze and pills). So, I played the game: went to meetings, stopped for a while, went to marriage counseling, and played the part of the caring guy who accepted his problem and was doing something about it. But I was bullshitting them all and myself – cunning and baffling.
To get them off my back and to “satisfy” the wife, I went into stealth mode. I would only buy booze with cash -- and only in the little shooters so I could dispose of them and not have any booze around. I lied expertly to cover my tracks and thought I had them all fooled. Then came the day when my wife confronted me and said she could not take anymore. I had been there several times already with her. There had been several “final” warnings. But I was always able to convince her to “start over’’ with me – God, that woman loved me so!!
This time, after eleven years of being my life partner/wife and sacrificing her dignity and self-respect, she told me she needed some space and I would have to leave. I tried to manipulate her into relenting, but she was adamant. I moved out. Lost and alone with no idea how to be by myself. We divorced within five months. I LOST THE LOVE OF MY LIFE BECAUSE OF MY ADDICTIONS.
So here I am in a different city, trying to deal with the pain of that loss. I lost the one person who means the most to me now that I am sober. Every day is painful, but I am staying with the program. A 12 step program saved my life. It could not save my marriage.
Homer D. Hill
7 August 2017