In most instances, procrastination is the killer of dreams. and a major component of failure. There is however at least ONE situation where I can say that creative procrastination is the underlying factor in success.
In 1985 when I was 26 years old my life was a mess. People who knew me thought I was bright. Family, teachers and employers said I had promise and potential. I was a fall down drunk, with low self esteem, hell bent on destruction in complete denial. I was killing myself, sabotaging opportunities and obliterating relationships with family and friends. This saga began at the ripe old age of 12/13.
A few legal problems and court mandated counseling resulted in extreme pressure for me to attend 12 step recovery meetings for my alcoholism and drug use. I had lost my drivers license, job, place of residence, friends and was facing the potential loss of my freedom and future, so I reluctantly acquiesced with a cynical arrogance and false sense of superiority. My first few attempts were futile since I only had pity for the poor fools that were baring their souls, whining about the bad choices the made and drinking horrible coffee with a strange sense of gratitude.
It was March 9th of that year when a meeting I attended blasted through the concrete facade I had erected allowing to cold light of truth to permeate my being. The overwhelming dread that enveloped me was a level of fear I had previously never experienced. All at once I KNEW I was destined to die by my own choices and the only mercy would have been if it was sooner rather than later.
The fools that I had previously had pity and disdain for all came to my side with encouraging words of hope. Naturally I thanked them, but inside KNEW there was no way I would live my ENTIRE LIFE without ever drinking or using a drug again. That would be impossible and any attempt would be an exercise in futility so why kid myself. The cavalcade of meetings and diverse mix of stories I had heard up to that point had finally convinced me that one fact was undeniable and that was that I would never be able function in life if I drank. Knowing that any attempt would be short lived, I was panic stricken.
The elders and newbies alike all kept assuring me that I did not have think about life without drinking, just commit to today and let tomorrow take care of itself when it got there. That seemed reasonable, so I gave it a shot. When I hit the 90 day mark, my panic began to wane, and a bit of comfort and sense of calm crept in. In the back of mind, since I was working this deal 1 day at a time, I still KNEW that someday I would drink again. I began kicking that can down the road. I told myself, I would revisit my desire to drink after I was sober for 1 year.
Once I received the above coin, I thought to myslef that 3 years of this life would be tolerable. You see in 1988 I would turn 30. So that would be a good time to get back to living as a ” Regular Person”
- After that I chose to kick the can to 5 years, 1990
- Then I kicked it to 1998 (lucky 13 years) because I would be 40 years old and that would be a good time to drink again, then
- Of course Y2K 2000, what better time to pick up a nice aged single malt, 15 years sober
- Then age 50 seemed to be a good target. I would be 23 years sober 2008
- My next spot for the can was my 30th anniversary. 30 YEARS WITHOUT A DRINK IS MORE THAN ANYONE CAN BARE. 2015 AT AGE 56
- Next, I figured at 60, I have proven myself to be a responsible adult, raised my kids, what’s to lose now? That was 33 years sober 2018.
- Here I sit approaching 62 years old, 2 days away from my 35th anniversary without a drink or a drug of any kind
In two days, I will ad the 35 coin to my group. I bought a nice frame that will hold 50 that I can mount them and hang them on the wall. 35 years of tossing them in a drawer has been enough.
They say all good things will come in time. You know whats funny; I’m tired of kicking that beat up can. I believe I am the point where I can say with confidence:
“I’m done drinking, I gave it up”!
So I guess there is a time where procrastination is a real benefit.
One Day at a Time: But hey, the framed wall case only holds 50 coins. In 2035 I’ll be 87 years old then. Hmm, something to think about!
The Journey IS the DESTINATION.