In Al‑Anon, I have learned that while there have been tragedies in my life, my life is not a tragedy. There are many components that make up the whole of me. No one thing solely defines me. This is important for me to remember when listing off my character defects and the negative things that have happened to me. No one part totally defines me, but all of my characteristics and experiences together make me who I am.
I am the daughter, granddaughter, and niece of alcoholics. I am an aunt and cousin of alcoholics. And I’m the mother of an alcoholic. My daughter died of her disease. But I did not die of her disease. I lived—unexpectedly.
Every day, I am grateful for something. For some things. And I say them out loud. This gratefulness is another piece of who I am. I am all these things. I suppose the lesson for me is to remember all these things and not dwell on the hurtful parts too terribly long. I see them, acknowledge them for the part they play in me, and carry on living my best life.
By Arrow B., Oregon
The Forum, August 2023
Feel free to reprint this article on your service arm website or newsletter, along with this credit line: Reprinted with permission of The Forum, Al‑Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc., Virginia Beach, VA.