The “falling off the pink cloud/mountain top” view has never resonated with me after the earliest stages of recovery. None of this knowledge could be taken away from me. This was mine to keep. I could never again be taken down into the depths of despair, simply because I had been to the mountain top and on the pink cloud. Those experiences could not be taken away. In recovery, I have never known the depths of depression and despair and the complete lack of solution or the ability to even begin to articulate a way to resolve a problem. As well, in my active stages of alcoholism, I never experienced the clarity, the joy, the pleasure in simple things that I have experienced in recovery.
I know that depression, sadness, misfortune, will continue to be experienced in recovery. In fact, I have truly grieved in sobriety for the first time. In the past, my grief was always medicated away with alcohol. I actually experience sadness, depression, more in sobriety than while drinking. The operative word is to truly experience the emotion as opposed to wallowing in a cesspool of alcohol induced haze, trying to avoid feeling at all expenses. Through living sober, I have come to understand and believe that there is always hope. In my experience in hearing others, and living the process myself, I see solutions in sobriety. After a time I begin to see more of those experiences in myself.
Perhaps one of the greatest incentives toward staying sober is that I have yet to experience the “this is it” and there is not way out from here. Rather, I understand both the highs and the lows are transitional, but that the mountain top is always in view. I thoroughly enjoy that when I am sliding down the slopes of the mountain top, that there are experiences along the way to break the fall, so that I do not need to go so far from the mountain top before turning around to come back up.