Monday, December 8, 2008

999 daily reprieves

Clean and sober for nine hundred and ninety nine days.  

It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a subtle foe. We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition. Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God's will into all of our activities. "How can I best serve Thee - Thy will (not mine) be done." These are thoughts which must go with us constantly. We can exercise our will power along this line all we wish. It is the proper use of the will. (Big Book, page 85)

Someone asked me if I had gotten the program? Not sure what that means, to get the program, but I think he was asking if I was cured, if it was easy for me now. I told him that I don't think we "get" the program. All we "get" is a daily reprieve, based on the work we are doing to maintain our spiritual condition. I can't sit on my butt.

Went to a step study last night, we were discussing step 5. What really struck me as we read the chapter out of the 12 and 12 was:

The second difficulty is this: what comes to us alone may be garbled by our own rationalization and wishful thinking. The benefit of talking to another person is that we can get his direct comment and counsel on our situation, and there can be no doubt in our minds what that advice is. (page 60, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

The context is about doing step 5 with another human being, that we need the input of someone else so we don't delude ourselves. That our thinking cannot be trusted. I believe this to be true in every area of my life. That, if given the opportunity, I would trust my thinking over anyone else, believing I am the only one capable of true thought. Hmmmm, self delusion?

I've often said this is a program about we. AA is not something we get out of a book. AA is something lived in the company of others. That we risk becoming vulnerable and open, to other humans and to a Higher Power. 

I am grateful for my sobriety. That I have not drank or porned or chatted in the last 999 days. I did not do this on my own. I am thankful that the doors to the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous were open to me. That people open those meetings, make coffee, set up the chairs, clean up afterwards, doing this day after day, year after year. Folk with 30, 40, or 50 years of sobriety keep on coming back to share with us new comers the hope to be found in those rooms.  These are the same folk that teach me how to become the hand of AA, how to help others in their sobriety. That teach me to keep coming back. 

My gratitude list could go on and on. For my Higher Power, for family, for sponsors, for recovery friends, for fellow bloggers and writers, for the many people who have been involved in my life while I was drinking and in my recovery. For the painful experiences that brought me into sobriety. I would not have come willingly. 

One day at a time.


Mary P Jones (MPJ) said...

Every journey starts with a step, every 999 days pass one day at a time. I'm so glad you're here. Thanks for sharing.

Cat said...

My husband has a group of people he goes to meetings with on a ragular basis each week - and I totally get the idea of the program being about a WE as opposed to something else. basically without the WE there is no group mentality, group sharing and group healing.

~Tyra~ said...

Congrats on 999 days, awesome!!

Lou said...

I'm doing step 5 again in January with my sponsor. I'm really looking forward to it, it is like a renewal.

Shadow said...

you are so right... a daily reprive it is. congratulations on your 999 days! that's wonderful!

Pam said...

That is wonderful.
I remember standing up in a meeting when I had 1,000 days and said I wish they made a 1,000 day chip. I gentlemen in the room made me a chip out of paper, it's still in my jewelry box :)