The Forum Magazine

The Forum Magazine

Al-Anon's monthly magazine, The Forum, contains many personal stories of inspiration, some of which are made available each month on the Internet by authorization of Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc.

It has been almost 14 years since my father had his last drink, his last rage, his last broken promise, and his last lie. But it wasn’t until he stopped drinking that I realized I was just as sick as him. I wanted so much to trust his words, to not be afraid of him getting angry, and to trust that he wouldn’t lie to me. But the reality was that I still feared all of it. He stopped drinking, but I didn’t stop fearing.

This past summer, my daughter and I planned to hike a section of the Appalachian Trail. Although we both loved the outdoors and were frequent day hikers, neither of us had attempted an overnight backpacking experience. After watching numerous on-line videos for advice, studying trail maps, and loading our packs, we set off for adventure, compass in hand and a smile on our faces.

Let me start by saying I don’t often like epiphanies. The sudden awareness of something I didn’t understand before can be unsettling—and annoying.