When I read my inventory and prayed ten years ago, something unbelievable happened. As a flow of Power rushed through me, all of the darkness suddenly washed away.
That is why I became driven to share my experience, write the book and start the blog. Having failed with many local sponsees and unable to reach enough addicts and alcoholics, I needed a platform – a way to reveal this solution for what it really is.
I just wanted addicts out there to know how truly amazing it is to be okay. When you can simply exist and be at peace without all sorts of distraction, there is nothing better.
All we really need is something to do, some healthy kind of work, some purpose. When you find something to do that nourishes you and fills you up, you can sit down afterwards and feel both calm and lifted up at the same time.
To be able to simply live, without substance or distraction, is really the best thing in the world. That’s what we’re seeking anyway, isn’t it? Well guess what, it is not only possible but it is a certainty if you genuinely want it and are willing to go to any length to get it. And what a blessing from God that we even have specific tools and instructions on how to get there.
We take Steps.
And no, I don’t mean we read the poster on the wall at the meeting or fill out some watered-down step worksheets by those who don’t understand what it takes to actually recover.
Take steps as they were laid out in the Big Book and give your whole self to them. Give 100% and give everything you have within you, and I guarantee drugs and alcohol will never be a problem again. I guarantee that God will never bring you anything you can’t handle.
If we put our spiritual growth first above all else, we will forever be free.
It’s that simple.
I don’t get it, why do we reward ourselves with recognition, applause and sobriety chips just because we stopped lying, robbing, and breaking the hearts of those who love us?
Awarding sobriety chips has become a mainstream part of AA despite symbolizing the antithesis of the essence of the Twelves Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and the frame of mind we are to cultivate.
Please, someone help me understand this because I have no clue why this is acceptable, or at least what this has to do with Alcoholics Anonymous.
Not only do we addicts and alcoholics not deserve a de facto trophy just for staying sober, for not inflicting 24/7 pain to our loved ones, and for not continuing to be pathologically self-absorbed, but we do not deserve what we still have left in our lives. If you are an addict or an alcoholic out there and any combination of friends, parents, siblings or spouses have stuck with you, remember this:
You do not deserve them.
After giving up the right to continue drinking and using, you continued to do whatever the hell you wanted to do without a care in the world. You failed to find a solution that really works. Worst of all, you failed to become willing to change, to do the right thing, to be a better person, to love and give back to all those you selfishly stole from.
Now go get your sobriety chip, suck down those butts, and slurp your iced coffee all day long. Don’t worry about your family, your friends, your spouses or your children back at home. You’ve never given them the time of day anyway, so why start now?
Achieving physical sobriety is nothing. Recovery is not a function of time. It is a function of what actions we take and at what frequency we take them. The fact remains that no alcoholic or drug addict can achieve and maintain any quality of recovery without cultivating and obeying his or her conscience. Once the obsession to drink or use has been lifted and choice restored, relapse becomes a moral failure, especially if you consider the degree of agony and pain we cause others. There is no science that can justify ripping a mother’s heart right out of her chest.
Sorry, but that is just the truth as it has been revealed to us through our experience…
*Note: First draft of Anybody Can Take Steps is finished. Editing begins now and then will publish 😉
I remember when my son’s therapist at his first rehab told me that he should not be working and he needed to focus totally on his recovery. My response was, well that would be nice, but it’s not an option, I cannot afford to support an adult child. My son even disagreed with the counselor telling him that idle time was his worst enemy. So many people I know with addicted adult children bear the financial burden of taking care of them for years…… I just don’t see how staying home, sleeping late and doing NOTHING all day helps them recover. Then there are the 90 day rehabs then onto a sober living home for a year or more. I could not do that for my son, I did not have the financial means. Maybe I am crazy but I wanted him working. When crises happen in my life and there is addict drama and I am having a meltdown it isn’t an option to leave my job to “recover”.
Working is a part of recovery, and an integral part at that, especially when we have been walking backwards for so many years and owe financial amends to many. In fact, failure to make amends to our creditors, our friends and our families in this way is a direct path to relapse. The entire point of recovery is to finally stop depending on and taking from those who have had to carry our weight for so long.
Sure at times we must go heavier in one department vs another, but our recovery is wholistic and involves working, spiritual and family. We must balance all three, but neglecting either is not an option. This is why therapists have no business working with addicts. They do not understand addiction. They have not recovered themselves, nor have they sufficiently studied the Big Book.
And I agree with you profusely about your last point. We addicts get sick by our own selfishness, tear everything apart, break your heart and then it is we who get to go away to our cushy treatment centers to nourish our souls and work on ourselves, when the truth is that our families deserve a retreat more than we ever will, and yet, they are the ones who must remain to trod on and deal with everything.
It’s very similar to the way the government treats the middle class. He who works the hardest and does the right and responsible thing gets screwed the most, despite the fact the taxing people is deflationary and therefore depresses economic growth.
What you must understand is that nothing outside of the addict can fix the addict. There is nothing that can be said, nothing that can be bought, no pill that can be taken, no therapist that can explain it away, no guru that can provide the magic answer, no doctor that can treat what ails us, no science project that can magically remove the darkness inside. Only addicts can fix themselves by taking enough action to access the unlimited power of God.