Monday, February 16, 2009

The last one sober

Well, it seems that person is me. They tell you in rehab the odds are against you, manipulating the numbers to this message: only one person in this room will make it. That was what they told us almost three years ago, in a quiet little house in the mountains. A place where people cleaned up from all kinds of poison, finding some hope to make a new life, or recapture the best parts of an old one.

Until five months ago, there were two of us. Me, and S - I always referred to him as the "the other sober one." We live five miles apart, the two stubborn cusses that wouldn't drink no matter what. For quite a long time we kept each other strong through the fear, sorrow, insomnia and muscle pains. Phone calls and emails, any time of day or night.

We didn't have much else in common, and in time we became sporadic correspondents. Maybe we just stopped worrying about each other, and that was the wrong thing to do.

Just tonight, I heard from him; the news isn't good. He relapsed hard in November, going into liver failure after a few weeks of daily, constant drinking. Liver failure, indeed...he lapsed into a hepatic coma for about five weeks. The strong, handsome man is now an invalid, struggling to re-solidify the scrambled eggs in his brain. He's slowly improving, but the prognosis is an unknown - I've seen miracles, and I've seen death.

Pray for S.
Pray for everyone who wants that drink they shouldn't have.
Pray for the people I loved that died because they couldn't say - no.

Pray for me, too, because it's lonely to be the last one who wanted to keep living. I don't understand how they lost hope, and I haven't. Because hope isn't in the bottle, hope comes when you pour what's in the bottle down the drain.

Here's a little ditty for all those that are still in the game - She'll Have You Back. Name your she-devil and sing along.