So, this is where I am

The thoughts that I’d been having over the past few days stuck with me into the evening yesterday.  Despite my best efforts to occupy my mind with other things including listening to music, playing my acoustic guitar, opening up my electric guitar to see if I could fix it (it’s busted and probably will not be worth repairing), and taking a long walk in the cold air, I had trouble shaking those thoughts.

So, I went to a meeting.  And that helped.  As I walked into the meeting I thought to myself, “I sure hope this speaker is a good one.” And she was.  She had a story to tell, but more importantly she was good at conveying a message of hope.  I went to bed last night with good thoughts in my mind.

And then this morning came around.  I went to my morning meeting and felt anxious all through it.  Sometimes, you feel like the topics of the shares are directed at you.  I knew they weren’t because no one knew what was going on in my head, but they sure felt like they were.  Some felt comforting, some felt like attacks.

After the meeting I agreed to meet my sponsor for breakfast after dropping off Mr. Grey at school.  Over coffee and eggs, I opened up about the fact that I’ve been kind of feeling sorry for myself about not being able to drink again.  And you know what, he understood.

He also talked with me about the stages of loss.  I’m very familiar with these stages, having lost many people over the years, but I hadn’t thought about them in relation to my decision to stop drinking.

On the scale of DABDA (Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance) I think I’m in the depression phase.  There is a part of me that recognizes that I could be in the anger phase, but I don’t feel angry about not being able to drink, just down about it.  I think I went through the denial, anger and bargaining phases long before I decided to seek help in AA.

The good news about this is that it may mean that I’m closer to acceptance.  The bad news is that the depression phase can last a long time.  I know this from experience.

With that in mind, I’ve got to start working on figuring out how to minimize this phase.  While my sponsor and I are in agreement that step 1 happens before you walk in the door at an AA meeting, I am starting with exercises focused on step 1 this week.

This is where I am, and this gives me hope.

 

 

7 thoughts on “So, this is where I am

  1. Nice, and nice that you have an awesome sponsor. Bits and pieces; one foot in front of the other; break it all apart and build it back up when you’re ready; and show everyone a little gratitude. It always makes me feel better to show someone a tiny bit of gratitude because it comes right back at you.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “Today I took the first step on a journey to a better life. (This time I’m not going it alone.)” This is what you said (posted) to formally start down this path. I’m glad to see that you are continuing to remember that you don’t need to do any of this alone.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Howdy Boots, hope your doing as well as can be expected, and I hope you expect great things in your recovery. The idea that my life would get better if I were to just quit drinking, eventually would drive me back to it. Time and time and time again, the harder I tried to “stay sober”, the harder matters got. When the thoughts of drinking and using would come on me, or when regret, remorse and shame would fill me with rancid memories of the good ol’days, I was as much a prisoner to addiction/alcoholism as I was when I full in full-tilt mode.
    The recovery I have come to know is one where the drink/drug problem is removed never to return, however I must engage my recovery as I did my addiction. I do not wish to quote the book or give direction as to the steps that would lessen you plight, but it would ,maybe, just possibly, quite assuredly, behoove you to pay some attention to the words printed on page 84.85,86,87,88. These are the pages that contain the daily discipline which when taken will help you to rest you restless mind. I gotta get off my box, but if you ever need to talk or just reach out I will always be here. You are never alone!!!!

    Thanks for all your great work an keep on keepin on!
    Chris PHRC

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Chris-

      Many thanks for the continued support and advice both here and on the twitters. It’s great to get good input from folks like you. I pulled your contact info of the comment to protect you from spam. I’ve stashed it away in my growing list of folks who I can reach out to. I’ll definitely give the pages you mention a closer look. I read most of the big book before I got into the program. Somehow, I thought that meant I didn’t need to read it when I got started. Naive and foolish, I know, but I’m starting to crack it open again, at the behest of my sponsor and others.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Right on brother Boots, I teach my guys that when their thinking about not-drinking they are thinking about drinking – It’s weird that way!! I got to the “rooms” in 1979, but it was not until 2009 that I managed to pop my head out and see the light. It was Jan. 10th 2009. I had just moved into a sober-living home and saw a young dude reading his book like his sponsor had asked him too. I asked what he was reading and he was reading “We Agnostics”. I knew it well. I sat down and we spent the next few minutes discussing what spirituality meant to him.
        I “showed”him the passage on page 52 which reads.- “When we saw others solve their problems by a simple reliance upon the Spirit of the Universe, we had to stop doubting the Power of God.Our ideas did not work. But the God idea did. That’s what I had been doing for 30 + years in and out of recovery, doubting that there was a spiritual remedy to my dilemma.
        That very night when I went to bed, I put my head on my pillow and realized that all day long I had not thought about drinking, I had not even thought about not-drinking. Drinking – not drinking -I had been relieved from the obsession. That simple and that easy. It was the change of my perception that had produced the desired outcome. The “Insanity of the next drink” has never returned. Thanks.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Now that is an awesome story. I’m getting there, slowly but surely. That particular passage struck me when I read it. It’s odd that some of these words stick with me even if I’ve not read them in many months or even years. Thanks.

        Liked by 1 person

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