Relapse is like a bad friend that you know doesn’t serve you and your purpose, someone who breaks you down, someone who is the thorn in your side. But you allow them to come into your life anyway. You think that this time, it’ll be different. They’re in disguise, because nothing has changed. You’ve taken charge of your sobriety, therefore you can take charge of moderation. But it’s relapse in disguise.

You let your guard down, and buy into the fantasy that moderation is possible. But you do it again, and again. Remember that saying, that alcohol, if anything, is a disease of amnesia?

That proves to be true for you: that using something to numb the pain, if only momentarily, is the best way for dealing with your problems. How easy it is to forget.

They stack up: the anxieties at work, the problems at home, the lack of time spent on self-care. You aren’t careful and those things begin to feel overpowering, like a big weight on your chest. They start to eat away at your coping mechanisms, nipping at your subconscious.

So you take off that weight the best way you know how.

It’s best to return to sobriety knowing that you haven’t been defeated. Your return is your strength. It’s possible to snap back after relapse. But identifying what brought you there in the first place is what’s going to prevent you from letting go again.