It wasn’t long ago, 39 days ago to be exact that this past week was LOADED with reasons (as well as excuses) to GET LOADED.
Last week, I returned to work after a vacation and got thrown into lots of work as well as my brother and his family came to the family camp for a vacation. I wont be discussing my brother in this particular post but let’s just say…we have our issues. We certainly have had our “knock down, drag outs” over the years, mostly because we are completely different people that have completely different commentary about how we grew up and what that was like. But as I said, that is another topic for another day.
I was happy to go to my meeting on last Monday morning at the local shelter. It was a feeling of a “safe” place for me. A place where I could say the “Serenity Prayer” and feel the energy that I get from others there. That meeting for me, before the start of my day, set me right for the whirlwind week I was about to have. In fact, knowing that I had that meeting waiting for me on Monday, while I waited for my brother and his kids to show at the camp kept me safe from the bottle. Typical of my brother, he was HOURS late which prevented me from having any real time with the niece and nephew I see about once a year. This year, I saw them for an hour and a half.
The Big Book
Before I stopped drinking, I had started reading The Big Book at a pretty slow pace. I found it pretty silly and I was sure that it wasn’t for me. Then after the first few meetings I thought the “evangelism” of people about the program, the constant talk at meetings about attending meetings was well…now that I think of it another excuse why the program wasn’t going to work for me.
I Didn’t Get It
When I first stopped drinking, I was consumed with it – NOT DRINKING. Why I couldn’t drink. Why not drinking meant- not drinking -not ONE DRINK. I did believe that. I had experimented with “controlled drinking.” Controlled drinking for me, meant not drinking for a period of time (without going to AA) and then starting up “situationally drinking” – bad day, good day, death, stress, you get my drift – only to end up drinking everyday, all day. Dreading every morning. But being consumed with NOT drinking didn’t mean that life stopped. Didn’t mean that I could escape from “As the World Turns” forever. I muddled along sobering up for the first few weeks and sorted out what I could, found some energy, took some vacation and when I came back, there was…LIFE !
Seeing the Light
Well of course not completely, but sh*t I am working on it. I am glad I listened that I needed to go to meetings. I went every day to at least one and also one each day while I was on vacation where I had to search for them. I also read the Big Book or some other AA literature when I begin to feel the stress of a situation. (I got to read quite a lot while I waited for my bonehead brother.) Instead of tipping a few back getting pissed off, I read, tried to take some breaths and thought about my Monday morning meeting and how I was excited to go. And when the family arrived, I was able to enjoy the short time with my niece and nephew without the fog of the bottle. Or the guilt the next day.
It is “One Day At A Time” and I am beginning to learn that going to meetings and reading even on good days, is like money in the bank for the days when it is not so good. I am pretty sure that there will be days when I am clenching my fist and praying to get past the next hour but not today. But I am headed to a meeting!