Lately I have read some absolutely brilliant posts on a host of great, sober topics.
The authors write beautifully and speak eloquently about all the new things that are realizing about not drinking. How great they feel, how well these new habits are working for them, how a year or so in they are learning so many new things from their therapists, or a great book, a sober blog challenge or a flash of inspiration….
Pause when agitated.
What anyone thinks of you is none of your business.
One day at a time.
Etc, Etc, Etc…
I cannot help but realize, and be grateful, that I had all of these ideas available to me from the very first AA meeting I attended.
I completely get it that not everyone wants to go to AA. I honor everyone’s choices that got them sober, because, DAMN! you are sober and that is awesome! I understand that people sometimes have strong opinions about AA, both negative and positive (I still find myself with a lot of differing feelings about it). I particularly resonate with those who have a problem with the “god” thing, oh how I identify! That pesky “higher power” issue almost kept me out of the rooms. But I wanted to stop drinking more than I wanted to argue about a higher power(or any other excuse) so when someone offered to take me to an AA meeting I accepted. So when I read about an incredible “new” concept that I have been working since day one (not perfectly, these things take time) on someone’s blog, and they are just seeing it a year or sometimes longer in…..well.
I get real grateful real fast that I decided to barrel through all my huge difficulties with AA and just do it.
Because taking that pause ALWAYS works, and has since the day I heard it. And letting go of others opinions of me has been hard, but I knew, from day one, that I needed to work hard on that and I have. And staying in the now, that one day at a time thing? Well, it’s genius, and the longer I stick around the “geniuser” it gets. I can do ANYTHING for a day. And then I can get up and choose it again.
I am only mentioning these three points because I have seen a lot of revelations around them in the last couple of weeks, and all from people who don’t “do” AA. There are many others.
I am SO happy to see others coming in to these ideas on their own, or with their therapists or maybe from some other sober blogger ( maybe even me!). But I feel so lucky that I was able hear these things early on. I am grateful that I was able to throw aside all preconceptions of AA and just fucking do it (and that is what it was, and often continues to be for me).
I know other things work. I honor everyone’s path. The fact that we are all sober speaks volumes. Yet there is the rub, too. We aren’t all sober. I’m also writing this because I spent some time recently on the phone with a woman who cannot stop drinking, has tried everything that she is willing to try over and over, but refuses to try AA because she “thinks it’s weird”. All I could do was tell her my experience and wish her well, but I don’t understand her attitude. Or maybe it’s just simply that she isn’t ready to quit. Until you are honestly ready to quit, nothing will work for you.
I guess at this Holiday time, as a New Year is about to begin, I needed to write a little love letter to what helped ME get sober. A thank you, as it were.
So thank you AA for being so available. For being FREE. For introducing me to some kick-ass life concepts and some really kick-ass people. For letting me know there are other ways of doing and thinking, and allowing me to accept that little by little, with no pressure or agenda other than to help me get and stay sober. Period.
And maybe this is a little push to others who are about to jump on this crazy sobriety train to give it a try. AA works, for a lot of us. If you have any questions, ask me. Feel free to complain too, I have no problem with that, I can bitch with the best of you. The New Year always brings new people into the rooms of AA, that resolution thing, right? Some stay, many don’t. If they don’t it’s not AA’s fault. I am sponsoring someone right now who came into AA a couple years ago but left. She wasn’t ready. She’s back and has almost 8 months sober. This time it’s working for her, AA didn’t change, she did.
I just made it through my 4th sober Christmas. I know it can be done, I’m willing to talk about it.
I have a fantasy about entire world domination of fabulous sober people, no matter how we all get there!
But the sooner the better and, for me, AA has been the bullet train to a new, sober life that is SO much better.
Peace all, and lots of love.