My dear friend, Ron, sent me this prayer this morning.
What a beautiful reminder that I can never, ever forget what it was like when my world was spiraling out of control. When I was drinking to not feel. When I was drinking to escape. When I hated myself. When I was full of worry, shame, guilt and resentment...especially, resentment. I wanted to blame everyone and everything, so that I was the victim. I wasn't responsible.
But, guess what? That wasn't true.
No one was victimizing or hurting me more than me. Actually, even that statement is a little off. The only thing that was victimizing and hurting me more than myself was alcohol. I had relinquished control to it and it owned me. I was no longer capable of being the person I knew I wanted to be because I had forgotten how to live without alcohol.
It's so important that I never forget where I was, how it felt or what was going on in my life the day that I walked through the doors of AA. If I do, I risk the chance of alcohol sneaking back and possibly even convincing me that "maybe it will be different this time".
It won't. Alcohol, if I allow it to take hold again, will kick my ass every.damn.time. It will always win if I am not prepared.
But you know what can kick alcohol's ass? Sobriety. And I don't mean just being sober...just not drinking. I mean real sobriety. Recovery, to be more specific. The kind of recovery that asks me to admit that I am powerless, every day, over alcohol. That my life will, once again, spin cycle and become unmanageable if my feet are not firmly planted and my butt not squarely seated in the rooms of a meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous.
My recovery asks me to:
* continue to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment or fear
* pause when agitated
* ask God to direct my thinking and divorce it from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives
* work a few steps WITH a sponsor
* go to meetings
* and, ask God to walk ever step with me along the way.
True recovery will squash my alcoholism every time, but I need to work my program of AA every day...one day at a time. I need to remind myself that I am always in a battle against alcohol. That, every day, all I have is a daily reprieve contingent upon the maintenance of my spiritual condition.
I need recovery that every day will remind me that I am still an alcoholic.
As my friend, Clay says, "I have a disease that wants to kill me and continues to exist whether I pick up a drink or not".
Please, Lord. Let me never forget.
Please, Lord. Let me always be grateful.
Please, Lord. One day at a time.
Thy will, not mine, be done.