At some point, usually in early sobriety, we alcoholics feel like we are floating on what’s known as the “Pink Cloud” It’s when we’ve come out of the haze and we begin to feel like we’re on top of the world. Mentally we’re feeling better, physically we’re feeling better, we’re thinking more clearly and “hope” has replaced the feelings of doubt and fear. Each persons experience is different when it comes to the Pink Cloud, but the description above is almost always the same. In my own experience it was like being sprung from a Jack in the box…we wind it waiting for something to happen in early sobriety, then suddenly Ta-Daaa! We realize we’re joining the human race and all the dark clouds have lifted and the box we’ve been in pops open and we’re free!!
In addition to the above, some of us feel we’re feeling so much better and want to save the world from what we’ve gone through. We’re all kinds of excited to be finally experience life and we want to talk about recovery all the time. We may try to talk to your friends who may or may not have a problem and bring up the dangers of this disease. We don’t really realize we’re doing it, it sorta just happens. We’re suddenly at an all time high you’ve never felt before. The down side of this is either not every body is ready or willing to hear about our recovery in full detail or our sudden enthusiasm is overwhelming to those who are used to us acting in a different manor and it takes some getting used to.
Another thing we may do while we’re riding that pink cloud is suddenly begin to expect praise or recognition. “Look at me, look at me, I’m finally doing and acting in a manor I should have been a long time ago, I’m finally becoming a part of the human race, I’m finally taking responsibility…..” We want that pat on the back, we expect it and we get mad when we don’t get it. The truth of the matter is we’re finally acting like a regular, everyday person, why should we get praise for that? In time we realize that and we tone it down…
There is actually a dangerous part of riding on that pink cloud….it happens early in sobriety, it can happen later on in sobriety…regardless of when it happens, it DOES happen. When we’re on the pink cloud, we feel alive. We can get caught up in that feeling and begin to ignore the process of recovery. It’s like we think, “I’m better now, I can handle it so I don’t have to continue the process.” Recovery from alcoholism or any addiction is a LIFE LONG PROCESS that should be done on a DAILY BASIS. There is no graduation, we don’t get a certificate of completion. We MUST continue the process that helped us reach this point every day for the rest of our lives. It sounds like a chore, but believe me, it’s really not. After awhile it becomes second nature. We just have to be careful not to let that pink cloud roller coaster ride get out of control and fly off the tracks of recovery.
October 28, 2014
AJ Menendez, Master Male Illusionist