24 years clean and sober as of Jan. 1st

Today is my AA, CA, and NA, birthday! I got clean in 1990. I had all the usual stuff happen to me in my crack addiction. Selling most of my possessions for a fraction of what I had paid for them. I I traded a $500.00 stereo for a few rocks of cocaine. I sold a color TV for a rock. And another color TV. I literally sold the shirt off my back for a single $2.00 hit. I tried for five minutes to get the guy to take my shoes for another hit but he wouldn’t do it. I was getting strong armed robbed in a park one day, I resisted and someone from behind broke a wine bottle over my head. Or when I traded some guys car without his permission or knowledge for $60.00 worth of crack.I never knew how that ended up. But the big drug dealer I sold it to had his suspicions it wasn’t mine and he threatened to kill me if it turned out it was stolen. You get the idea. Stuff like that. And I wasn’t even a hard-core druggie. But no addict, lightweight or not, goes unscathed.

But there were two pivotal moments that got me clean. The first was that I was laying in bed watching TV in1988. I also have paranoid schizophrenia and I was suffering from BAD Akathesia. The leg-jerking, not being able to sit still, the restlessness. But I was forcing myself to watch MTV. A commercial came on about drug addiction and recovery.They gave a phone number to call. I was in the right place at the right time.The commercial realy hit home. I called the number and it told me where there was CA meetings nearby. I went to one, it was a small meeting, about ten people.I thought everybody in the room hated me and was laughing at me. But after the meeting, a few walked up to me and sincerely greeted me and they were the nicest, coolest people. If they had been mean I might have walked out with a bad feeling and never gone back. So my lesson I’m sharing with anybody reading this is give people a chance. There are friendly nice people in12-step programs. don’t jump to conclusions and give up on people. I have to say, the people were nice but I was still not done with drugs. I went to meetings but I was using in between. But the seed of recovery had been planted. I knew there was help. But I used for another 6 months.Then I relapsed in my mental illness.I had stayed out of the hospital since 1982 but I relapsed in1989 and had several hospitalizations, maybe triggered by my drug use. I was back suffering and miserable AND an addict. Not a pleasant time for me. So my dad didn’t know what to do with me. I was 29 years old and staying with him. He found a Residential Treatment home for me. To make a long story short. I was living in the treatment home (and drinking) but one night I was had been there a couple months and I walked downstairs from my bedroom and discovered that an AA meeting was taking place in our large dining room. I started attending. A chance at recovery had fallen into my lap. I got serious about my recovery, I found other meetings. I move into a Board & Care home and kept attending meetings. The meetings were interesting, besides being helpful and informative. Entertaining even.

I started taking the bus to 5 or 6 meetings a week. I got a sponsor, I worked the steps. My sponsor told me to never turn down an opportunity to speak in meetings. So every time the chairperson at my meetings asked (as they always do) if anyone had a burning desire to talk, I would raise my hand and get up in front of 10, 15, 40, a hundred people and I would share. I’ve been to a thousand or more meetings. I’ve learned a lot. I have tapered down in my meeting attendance, I go about once a month. But I’m working on going to more. People in AA are pretty tolerant. Many of them have been in jail or psyche wards themselves. So this is a little of my story. I hope someone can relate. And I would consider it an honor if I inspired even one person to seek recovery. And succeed. Thank you.


sounds like you have been through a lot, you must have great will power to stop the drink and all

Happy Clean Birthday! :cake:

Thank you for this and Happy Birthday.
I read your post and I say to myself… I can do this. I can make it to year 24 someday. I admire how you’ve been able to kick this in the butt and that your still kicking it.

Happy New Year 77nick77.

Way to go, Nick!


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Congratulations and Happy clean24years birthday, Nick!

It’s very nice of you writing down what you’d gone through. Really positive and upbeat ! Thanks for sharing with us your experience and achievement.

Congradulations, that’s great.

That was inspiring, I am glad to hear that you turned your life around! That takes courage and resolve that many people don’t have.

Awesome! AA helps a lot of people. It has many principles that can help others without addiction, especially the mentally ill.

Malvok, My dad said the same thing. I rarely talked recovery with him because my drug use was a sore point with him.Of course he was happier with me not using drugs because my drug use caused him trouble and embarrassment. But he was never in the mood to talk about something that should never have become necessary in the first place. I wrecked two of his cars, and did other stuff that effected him, not to mention all the lying and deceiving from me in my addiction. But one of the rare times he spoke about the12-step programs, he basically said what you did. That many people could benefit from incorporating the principles of AA, CA, and NA into their lives including non-addicts and non-alcoholics. And living their lives by the12-steps.

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Congratulations Nick, you must be proud of what you have achieved. With your positive outlook, you set the stage for others.

Thanks everybody. Have a good weekend!

I can’t say that I completed the 12 steps however I am aware of them and do think on them. Some things from a recovery program that I took have always stayed with me. One was that everyone should have to go through recovery as it makes you look at yourself and what makes you tick or do the things that you do and stop blaming others for your own actions. The other was that usually when someone or something is pissing you off that you need to look at yourself first because it’s probably something about your own self that needs to be looked at. I still use that thought today to self check myself. I watch and I see that usually the very things that is pissing my loved ones off is the very same things that they are doing. We can see it in others but not in ourselves. So when something pisses me off I look to myself and my own actions first.


thanks. i’m smoking this weed and i’m done. have been to NA as well. found it last year. need to get back.



I have a dual diagnosis. I have both schizophrenia and alcoholism, that is. Today was forty years for me without a drink of alcohol!

I also have some thirty plus years without being overnight in mental hospital. Which is to say, I put down the drink and, for awhile, my life got even more painful.



Hey Jayster, congratulations. We avoided a lot of misery by staying clean. I don’t miss drugs or alcohol. Did you do anything to celebrate your milestone?

Nick, today was well lived:

Look to this day,
For it is life,
The very life of life,
In its brief course lies all
The realities and verities of existence,
The bliss of growth,
The splendor of action,
The glory of power —

For yesterday is but a dream
And tomorrow is only a vision.
But today, well lived,
Makes every yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.

Look well, therefore, to this day.

                          *Sanskrit Proverb*