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Grateful, Sober Dad by Chris N.

Grateful, Sober Dad by Chris N.

Sobriety has given me more blessings than I could have ever imagined when I walked through the doors of Turning Point on 05/10/2016. I have found a God of my understanding, dignity, love and forgiveness of myself and others and the ability to be present for the people in my life. It has also given me all the tangible blessings as well: employment, money in my bank account, a vehicle etc. This might all seem simple and elemental to the non-addict, but for me these are all miracles. But without a doubt, the single greatest blessing I have received is fatherhood. I am the father of an almost 3-year-old (pray for me please) and the stepdad to a 9-year-old. I got sober for me, I wanted a better life and all that recovery offered and I do the work, as much for myself, as for my family who needs and relies on me. The home where I was raised was chaotic and caused a lot of fear; I want my children’s home to be loving, fun, caring and supportive! I do not ever want them to know me as the person I was before I got sober, I never want them to see that man.

I was recently fellowshipping before a meeting that I regularly attend on Saturday mornings. The topic of being a father came up and we were all sharing our personal experiences. One of my friends told me how much she enjoys seeing the pictures of my family and that she was very impressed with the changes she has seen in me over the years, especially how I am as a father. I am not the best at taking compliments, so I was a bit uncomfortable, as I try to stay mindful and vigilant about my ego and self-importance. After the meeting, driving home in my own car, that is insured and I make monthly payments on (again, miracles), I reflected on the conversation. I was thinking about the night before when I fed, bathed, and read bedtime stories to both kids. I was struck with an overwhelming feeling of gratitude; I am a good father, and I am working to be a better man every day. When I was active in my addiction, I was not a good person; I was a liar, a cheat and a manipulative thief and I could barely take care of myself, let alone a family of 4. People often see the changes in us long before we do. Neither my relationship or being a father was planned, but I thank God every morning and every night for those blessings.