BY: TAMI HARPER WINN
As the summer comes to a close and fall whispers through the trees, my heart swells with joy. There are those that begin to dread the crispness that begins to settle in this time of year– the dimming of the colors into gray. Snow will soon blanket the earth and our living earth will take a long deserved rest – just as us humans, after a long day at work, need to rest each night. Symbolically, our body and mind die a beautiful death each night when we sleep. There is a hibernation, a time of preparation, for our rebirth when our eyes open once again to a new day.
Each morning, I am born again, ready to start anew. As part of my morning ritual, I reach for my “Gratitude Journal” and give thanks for all the many blessings I have in my life. I am grateful for the moments of peace that my mind and soul glean each evening as I rest. I can only imagine how grateful Mother Earth is for her slumber. She has worked so hard all year long producing all these magnificent plants, trees, and animals being born. All of her energy has been devoted to perfecting the splendor of her bounty each year that we as humans feed our bodies, minds, and souls with.
Fall is the time of harvesting the fruits of our labors. I believe I am in the fall of my life, both in age and in my sobriety. I heard it from a wise woman in recovery once, who practiced the Medicine Wheel, that our sobriety goes in seasons just as Mother Earth does and as our lives do. We are constantly growing, evolving, feasting, resting, and being brought back to life in a new way. What we experience is based on the season we are in – all the trials, tribulations, and miracles that are produced.
I can feel the cool breeze of the autumn air on my back. I see the turning of the colors in my life and I delight. I am now in the second cycle of my sobriety, my sixth year. This round I am understanding the significance and the meaning of the seasons in our sobriety. As I get older in age, not only in my humanness but in my recovery as well, more things are revealed.
I have put in hard work these past six years of my life, more so than all my other years combined. I have spent years cleaning up the wreckage of my past, uncovering new layers to myself, and laying new foundations for exponential growth. I am ready to harvest the fruits of my labor. My crop may not be as big as it will be one day, but this is only my second harvest and I am still learning how to till and work the earth of my new life.
As my finances come together and my maturity sharpens, everything falls into the places they belong. My life has begun to unfold before my very eyes. So this time around, as I start my harvest, I am filled with great excitement. There is a new me ready to be brought forth out of the orchard of life.
I have spent years actively working my recovery on a daily basis. My sobriety comes above all else – without it none of the rest exists. This is a fact. Yet as I harvest my truths, I have come to see that I have identified myself as an alcoholic to the point that it is my identity. I now see that it is only but one piece of the me God created, the tapestry of Tami. It is part of my story, but it is not my story.
I understand today that I am multifaceted. There are many parts of my identity that are equally important. It has only been through my writings that this was revealed. I am forever indebted to my readers, my higher power, and most importantly Drunkless for giving me the platform to jump from to test my wings. I have taken flight.
I feel that it’s important to mention here that when we first get sober all our energy goes into staying alive one moment at a time. Slowly, a little at a time, we regain our strength and discover that we can recover from this seemingly hopeless disease. Once sober for a length of time, we must learn to live amongst the rest of society – as one of them. In fact, the whole point of recovery is to learn to have a life and live it at its fullest. We must become what our higher power designed us to be – of maximum service to him and his fellow man or woman. We are not to stay in our past, but to evolve into whole beings capable of living full and meaningful lives.
So, with that being said, autumn is approaching. It is with a grateful heart that I share the fruits of my labor. I am ready to harvest what my higher power needs me to. I anticipate that change is inevitable, not only in my life but also in who I am as a writer to my readers. I only hope that my message continues to offer hope to those who are still suffering. More importantly, I hope that it allows my readers to see what full recovery from this disease can look like. It looks like living – and that’s just what I’m doing.
How and what I write about going forward is still unknown. I expect that, as usual, it will not be known until my pen bleeds the ink of my story across the pages of my life. I am eager for change to occur. I am ecstatic about the transformation about to happen. So, it with great anticipation, that I embark on the next leg of my journey. If it is what my higher power intends for me, I will be able to give all of you a glimpse into a life worth living, a life being lived, and all the possibilities recovery has to offer. I leave with you the hope that when the autumn of your sobriety approaches, you do not shudder, but look towards it with all the awe and wonder of the gifts that are rightfully yours to harvest. I hope you too can share your bounty with the world as well.
~Tami Harper Winn~
The story written here is solely the work of the author’s. Any use or reproduction of this article is prohibited without written consent of the author or credit to the author through works cited.