While I love going to professional sporting events from time to time like to our local Triple A baseball team, The Toledo Mud Hens, I find it hard to deal with all those who drink alcohol profusely at them, mostly because of their behaviors, especially as the end of the game looms near.
“WE ONLY GOT 2 MINUTES LEFT TO POUND SOME BEERS BEFORE WE’RE CUT OFF!!!”
Those were the words a man screamed quite loudly as he quickly downed a beer while standing next to one of the alcohol stands at the most recent game I attended. Surrounding him were a bunch of others who were all slamming beers as well, each trying to consume as much alcohol as they could before the booze sales ended that night at the stadium I was at. All of them were being overly loud and rowdy, shouting various obscenities into the air without any regard to those walking by, including a number of children.
It’s behaviors like this that make it truly difficult for a recovering alcoholic like me to continuing going to any of these types of sporting events. While I do my best to tune it all out when I’m at them, I often struggle doing so, particularly because it always feels like I’m surrounded by people who act like I once did, when I was still an active drinker.
At this particular game I went to just over a week ago now for my partner’s company event, most people around me seemed to be consuming one alcoholic beverage after another to no end. And as the night rolled on, it felt as if their voices grew louder, along with them shouting, doing increased antics, slurring their words, and smelling like a distillery. Thankfully at least this time, no one spilled their beers on me, as that’s happened before at events like this, since I became sober.
Honestly, I don’t miss any of this at all and specifically why I don’t attend many professional sporting events these days. But in the same breath, I must say, I was grateful I got to see all those drinking behaviors that night, as it was a great reminder of why I got clean and sober in the first place. You see, each of those drinking behaviors were things I did myself in my former active alcoholic days. Thus, I shouldn’t judge any of them because they’re just a reminder of me.
That’s why I think it’s maybe a good thing I continue to see this from time to time at things like a professional sporting event, because the longer I stay sober, the harder I find it is to remember how bad it was when I used to drink. Thus, seeing it like I did at this Toledo Mud Hens game recently, became a pretty good tool to jar my memory of a period of my life that I often tend to forget.
So, I’m choosing to look at the positive and thank God for my sobriety and all those drunk people I was around at that sporting event the other night. Because if it wasn’t for people like them, I might easily forget just how bad I was back in the day. And that’s definitely a path I wish to NEVER travel down in this life again, so help me God…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson