Tuesday, September 13, 2011


We were reading the story of "Alcoholic Anonymous Number Three" yesterday when we came across something I have never noticed before. Bill W. was speaking to Number Three's wife and said, "The Lord has been so wonderful to me, curing me of this terrible disease, that I just want to keep talking about it and telling people." Amazing gratitude at work. The writer went on to say that Bill's statement is a sort of golden text for the A.A. program.

As I was stumbling through my resentments this year, caught up in the anger and self-pity, my Higher Power continued to present opportunities for service. Fellow members of A.A. and you bloggers in recovery have taught me (over and over) of the importance of service, especially when the journey becomes rough. I had somehow connects with a fellow who could trust no other thoughts than his own. He starkly reminded me of myself. His resentments were open and raw, he was struggling with aloneness, he had set himself apart from family, A.A., and the world. He eventually stopped talking with me because I would not agree that A.A. needed major transformation (even though I had wanted to change my home group.) It was the beginning of letting go of my own resentments. Of surrender and learning how to trust again. Trust my Higher Power, trust my fellow A.A.'s, trust the process of change. That process I see as precarious and ethereal.

This process of being with another, listening and sharing, trying to be open and honest, is life changing. I have no idea how it works. It works even when the connection is difficult, unpleasant. To do the opposite, to be in isolation, to trust only myself, creates burdens that grow. Connected with others, the process of ego deflation begins.

The kind of gold that doesn't come in impossibly heavy bricks but of the lightest of wafers.


Syd said...

I think that getting over my resentments and being aware of new ones has helped me a lot. I don't feel the need to be apart from but can be apart of this wonderful fellowship. Thanks for writing about service. It is such an important part of recovery.

Cathy | Treatment Talk said...

The value of programs like AA and Al-Anon is the the connections you make while sitting in a room with people who truly understand your situation. You cannot find that in the "outside" world. It just isn't possible. There may be some things that need to be changed, and change is good, but the fundamental purpose is solid and can't be replaced.