46. Making a Habit of It
Andra, who was seven years sober before she relapsed, joined the conversation. “You know that slogan, ‘do the next right thing’? Doesn’t go far enough. Do the right thing once, that’s nice. Do it over and over, that’s a habit. Doing the right thing out of habit is much easier than doing a single right thing. Norm, you have a mess to clean up. You’ll have to do the next right thing a lot. Sounds like a burden, but it might get you into the habit of doing the right thing, of cleaning up after yourself.”
“Still sucks,” Norman said, shaking his head. “Even if I do get into some good habits.”
“It does suck at first,” Andra said, “but sometimes the habits morph into something good. When my husband was killed, I spent three years resenting him and drinking. Then I didn’t drink, over and over, one day at a time. I started writing about my feelings every day. That prepared me to visit his grave. In a year or so I was saying a daily little prayer of gratitude for time spent with him. None of that would have happened if I had just done the next right thing once.”
Today I will do the right thing at least twice.
Sober Not Somber © 2015 by Ken Montrose
(Just a reminder: Sober Not Somber is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to anyone you might know is purely coincidental.)