I think I like to blame a lot of my “issues” with alcohol, alcoholics, and alcoholism on my husband, but I’m no saint. I have been a drinker since I was first introduced to alcohol from the wine coolers we snuck from my mom around age 12. I was always the bad girl hidden in the good girl’s body.
When I was 17, a junior in high school, I was in a single car wreck which almost took my life. I say car, but it was as really a F-350 (translation, “humongous truck”) that I flipped a few times before landing in the ditch off of a county road. I was by myself, thankfully, and was found several feet away from the vehicle. When my blood alcohol level was taken at the hospital, it was 3X the legal limit of an adult. I was not convicted of driving under the influence, but instead, seeing as how I was a young white girl with “lots of potential,” I was given a slap on the wrist, a laughable sentence of community service, and sent off to college the next year. A party college no less, like that wasn’t going to be tempting.
While I was in college, I made some questionable decisions, as one does. But the worst idea I had was thinking I was still invincible or untouchable by the law. I got away with it once before, why not tempt fate again.
I was wrong. I was seriously wrong. I was pulled over and arrested for drunk driving at the ripe old age of 19. I was thrown in the drunk tank and charged for a DWI. But yet again, I was only given a measily amount of community service, paid a few court fees, and showed up to my probation officer when needed.
This second offense made my earlier “deferred adjudication” turn into a DWI conviction since I had violated the terms of not getting into anymore trouble. Now, on my record, it looks as though I have 2 DWIs within weeks of one another. Super.
I tell you all of this not so you feel sorry for me. Are you kidding me? I look back at that person and want to jump down her throat for being such a dumbass, almost killing herself or worse, someone else. No, I tell you this because I was privileged to not have to endure the penalties that should come with endangering the lives of other people. I was given the minimum sentence for crimes of this nature and though I am grateful to not have been sent to prison, I suffered in the long run by not really learning that there were in fact consequences to my actions. I now know the ramifications for behaving in such a wreckless way and I’m grateful to have stopped drinking. Otherwise, I can honestly say I think I might have been stupid enough to temp fate again.