It is extraordinarily difficult to be grateful for much while in active addiction. Our worlds shrink, our lives don’t make much sense, all our problems are everybody else’s fault, and nothing goes as we plan. We are constantly met with disappointment, and develop innumerable resentments as a result of our fear, anger, and sadness.
Then we come into recovery, expecting everything to change. People will start doing what we want them to do, our plans and schemes will come to fruition the way we plan for them to, and our lives will suddenly be lived in Technicolor. We expect an easy ride and to be effortlessly happy, joyous and free.
We Are Powerless Over People, Places and Things
With a little time in recovery, we realize that sobriety is not at all what we expected and, just as it was before, we are ultimately powerless over people, places and things. To add insult to injury, our fear, anger, and sadness is more acute than ever—how are we ever going to cope with life on life’s terms?
It is easy to concentrate our attention and energy on the things that disturb us, that anger us, and what we lack. After all, we had become so comfortable with negativity in our addiction. But when we start to look at the positives, the things that make us happy, and the things we do have, we start to recognize that our positives far outweigh our negatives.
There is much to be grateful for in sobriety. We have gained clarity of thought, have been restored to health, and reintegrate into productive society. We have made new friends, formed a strong foundation of support in AA fellowships and have learned coping skills we used to lack. Life possibilities are endless when we adopt an attitude of gratitude.