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Old 10-13-2009, 03:42 PM   #1 (permalink)
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One thing/moment that changed you as a person?


I was given this assignment and I was thinking about it and writing it all down and man the things that have made me who I am today.

The one recent thing is the process of detox and all the wonderful people helping me in my sobriety. I have my life back and I am a different person today than I was 21 days ago. I am a happy person, someone who loves herself. I am me again but I am stronger, more educated and I am sober by the grace of God!

So, I am curious as to what has shaped your life to the person you are today? It doesn't have to even deal with recovery or drugs or alcohol. It could be a moment in your childhood that changed you forever.

Thanks for sharing!
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Old 10-13-2009, 04:30 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Turning my will and life over to a Higher Power, a God of my understanding. It's something that continues to shape my life on a daily basis, assuming I trust and have faith.
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Wow Lavash that is f'd up!

I'd say another thing that really changed my life was going through putting a man in prison for molesting me. I was 16 going through all of this and I kept a postive outlook on things. Here has always been my slogan "everything happens for a reason, you live and you learn and you teach others with what you have lived". I was taught this at a young age "I can do and be whatever I want to be if I put my mind to it" and I know we have always heard this but when I went after something it was 110 percent or nothing at all. I usually always acheived!

But going through the molestation and the courts I knew that one day I would help someone else. I was coming out of this a stronger person and I wasn't going to let that man get me down. Profound moment in my life.
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I feel ya!!
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Sitting by my fathers side when he died. I was so angry that he died before he ever told me, 'he loved me.' I think its only the last few years that I realized that this has caused me to not get too close to humans.
Boy am I screwed up or what?
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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That's some powerful stuff, I fear others dying. My loved one's, I have a small family and I am sure that would be a very hard thing for me to deal with. I'm so sorry!
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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How about two things?

On a day in the early spring of 1995, I was sitting at home watching the movie Jacob's Ladder, it was during the watching of this film that I KNEW for certain that I would enlist in the military and go in the Army. The next day I walked into a recruiters officer and said I wanna go in the Army. I signed up, and within 8 or 9 months I was living in the desert, on deployment.

From civilian to soldier...

And recently, the night of 10/4/08, totally hammered with the room spinning and my life spinning out of my control; the night I decided that I would make an attempt to quit drinking the very next day. So far so good, it's been just over a year and that, along with enlisting, were two of the biggest and best choices of my life, both of which changed me big time as a person.

From drunk to sober...
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:38 PM   #8 (permalink)
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WOW, that is amazing. Isn't it funny how we just know when we are done. I so knew I was done. I had a complete meltdown. A lot of soldiers are having a difficult time with addiction and alcohol coming back from the war. Thank you for your service because to me you are a hero.
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:44 PM   #9 (permalink)
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a good few years ago i was sat outside a large store in a large town begging for money to buy booze.

id been sleeping on the street for maybe 2 years..chronic alcoholism and dying.

it was early december........christmas shoppers everywhere.

i was approached by a little girl... she was not frighten at all considering i was a mess.
i had long hair...shoes without socks....you get the picture.

mum was close by....shopping in hand and waiting.....

the little girl reached out and put a pound...or about 2 $ in my hand..
smiling she said merry christmas.

at that moment i saw my little girl........who i hadnt seen for 5/6 years.

i remember the pain.......the denial had slipped.....a moment of clarity if you like..
like a sober moment in time......and i looked back and felt the full weight of the misery i was in.

i knew i was finished.......but i couldnt stop......
at this point i started to reach out....it took a year or two to stop first time.

then i went round and round for a while......but even through all that i knew it was over.....if only i could stay sober .

i did stay sober once i found the right help for a drinker of my type...
AA 12 steps.

but ive never forgot that sweet child.......or the action of giving.
she will never know the effect it had on my happy hazy world..
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:48 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Those moments were as close as anything I ever had like an epiphany where I just "knew" what needed to be done, and that I would do it. I had toyed with the idea of enlisting in the service prior to that moment but to be honest I was always a little afraid of being the military, just not sure it was for me, then while watching that movie, I "knew" and there was no stopping me, and whatever fear I had was gone.

And I had similarly "toyed" with the idea of getting sober in the past but always felt too stuck to do anything about it. Maybe I was afraid of a sober life, just not sure it was for me, but feeling so close to death like I did that night, the choice never seemed more clear to me. Whatever was holding me back before, was gone.
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Old 10-13-2009, 05:49 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Trucker that is such a powerful story. That is such a beautiful thing. That child changed your life, well helped to change your life and if she only knew that. That just melts my heart.

Good for you and your sobriety! I was like you, knew I was ready to stop but couldn't and therefore I went to detox. But praise God we are clean today and you don't have to live on the cold streets. You are a blessing.
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Old 10-13-2009, 06:09 PM   #12 (permalink)
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My moment was when I had successfully F'd up a career, friendships, and some vows. It all came crashing down at once and I remember looking into my husbands eyes and saying "let me get educated further and find out who the hell I am - and if you want to leave I will never hold you back" He looked at me and said "I'm not going anywhere". It was that moment that I knew I was done living on my terms and had to turn things over to a higher power. It has changed my life 360 degrees and I will be grateful until the day I die.
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Old 10-13-2009, 06:36 PM   #13 (permalink)
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One evening 1988 I came across a PBS show with Bill Moyers talking to Joseph Campbell about "The Power of Myth". I was enthralled by the show. Finally I could see clearly all the questions I had about God had an answer that finally made sense to me. Then when I entered rehab for the first time in 1996 and was handed the Big Book. I realized that a God myth could not serve my needs as a Higher Power so I searched out a Higher Power that would. In that search I came across Alan Watts and Zen Buddhism.

Zen has transformed my strong atheist inclinations into a non-theist/deist understanding of what spiritual means to me. I feel fortunate to have come across a show that, as I was unaware at the time, would help me fit into AA and still have a round about way to help me maintain my doubt in faith. And yet have discovered a spiritual understanding that is meaningful to me. Thank you Joe.

"Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging." ~Joseph Campbell
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Old 10-13-2009, 06:36 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Wow very powerful great stuff. I forget what to say I am moved! All I can say is WOW for right now....

Ok take a minute! I think I am gonna cry! Awsome.
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:00 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Isn't sobriety a beautiful thing!?
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Old 10-13-2009, 07:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Thank you, Ashleek, for starting this thread. It's a great one! There are some wonderful stories here.

I was reminded of when I was 19 and a co-worker drove me out into the desert in the middle of the night. We worked at a restaurant. I jumped out of the car, bounced around on the pavement a bit and ran toward the lights of town. A Border Patrol car stopped. They didn't even know why they were out there, not on their route. I ended up not pressing charges because our employers minimized it with a boys will be boys attitude, made me feel it was my fault. I always wondered if my cowardice caused another woman to be harmed. It was years before I could get into a car with a man I hadn't known for years.

Three weeks ago I had to come face to face with the control that alcohol has had over me for many years. Something has changed in me. It's not only that I'm sober. There's something else. I'm not entirely sure what it is, but it's good, very good. I feel more connected to life and myself or something.

Thanks again!
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Old 10-14-2009, 12:27 AM   #17 (permalink)
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The death of my son.


You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.
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Old 10-14-2009, 01:42 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Lavash's story reminds me of a guy i met in rehab, heroin addict had been shooting up his wife for years, she didn't like needles, and had slept with someone else and got HIV...then passed it to his wife...she was in rehab the same time as him and the his plan was that they would get back together if she would just change...i then realised how insane we all were...and also that the story didn't really shock me that much because i could see myself in him...i also thought he was a really nice guy...

Doing a step 4 and looking at myself and my part in all things was the turning point for me to be able to begin to change...and it was not easy at all! A friend in NA commented that x was a nice guy...i said he is NOW...a cross section of (the scum of) society and i fit in well;-)

Last October i found a kitten on the road (the only animal i have ever honestly had feelings for, we had a cat when i was young and she was my only real companion). So i am by the side of this main road and i hear this miaowing, car runs over her and i run out into road...lucky not to get run over...anyways take to vet and home...bout 3 weeks later i am sitting in garden thinking how i am going to kill myself and this kitten is looking at me through the patio doors, so whilst i was working out who to give the little money i have left to, i kept thinking but who will look after trixie? So after some more thought i decided to go to an alcohol counselor and try one last time to get help...that kick started off the road to AA, which is littered with lots of co(God)-incidences. Weird huh?!

Love Shaun's post! Reminds me, totally different, of an time at a casino in Barcelona last year, i was playing blackjack 1000 a box and winning (on that night!), had a large crowd of guys around me that had apppeared one at a time, was getting pats on the back...comments that big up your ego etc...drunk obviously and i remember turning round and there was this woman there and she was looking at me with this absolute sadness and pity in her eyes, i turned away and looked again and still looking up at me...all i could think of for the next hour of playing was how can she see how i feel?! I could go on but the post would end up pages long;-)

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Old 10-14-2009, 02:59 AM   #19 (permalink)
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One thing????

Well being 55 I have had a few things that changed me as a person! LOL

1. My dad passing when I was 19.

2. The births of my first 3 children.

3. Joining the Air Force.

4. My first wife deciding after 17 years of marriage and 3 kids that (In this order) that she no longer wanted to be a mother or a wife any longer.

5. Meeting my present wife.

6. The birth of my twins.

7. Standing on the edge of a cliff knowing that if I continued to drink I would go over the edge and all of the above would have meant nothing.

8. Going into detox.

9. Going to AA and actually gaining HOPE for the first time in many years that even an old drunk like me stood a chance at staying sober.

10. Taking the steps with my sponsor and having a spiritual awakening as a result of them.

11. Passing on to others what was so freely passed on to me.

12. Living a life beyond my wildest dreams (Not materially) and being able to enjoy all of the above one day at a time.

9 thru 12 are the biggest deals in my life, without them my 8 grand children would never have known me as a grandfather.
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Old 10-14-2009, 07:57 AM   #20 (permalink)
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When I started doing this as a homework assignment things just came rolling to me. I could think of many defining moments in my life that shaped who I am today.

Here is another one, when my father (aka sperm doner) handed me the crack pipe for the first time. That was a very ugly time in my life but I came out a better person and got with my husband and we had our child. God was with me during that time. We weren't married but I knew I was supposed to be pregnant for a reason. That reason? Maybe to keep me off drugs for awhile, maybe a smack in the face to tell me to wake up and look at what you are doing to yourself, who knows really. I felt like it was God. That's another of one of my many.
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