Tag Archive: Alcoholic Anonymous


New Month, next step…

The 3rd step is also the 3rd step in my little cha-cha dance.

Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

We made a decision…  this says to me that it is truly up to me to make this choice.  I can choose to be sick and crazy, or I can choose to get better and ask for help from my higher power.  If I ask for help then I have to be willing to get out of the damn way so that He can do what He needs to do to help me. And it’s the care of God not the full control, not the ultimate fix all.  We still have to play a part in our lives, we just have to be willing to ask the right questions and listen to the answers.  It may not be what we want and it may not even be something that we understand at the very moment.  But it is there, if we ask for it.

If I ask for the ability to understand my husband, He is going to give me a situation where I have to be understanding.  If I want to forgive my husband, He will give me a situation where I will need to forgive.  If I ask to be more patient, He will give me a situation where I have to show patience.  He is not going to magically give me what I ask for, He is going to give me the tools to show myself that I have the ability to do it.  Al-Anon has shown me that when I asked for strength, He showed me that I am strong.

So as we start our step 3, remember that it is in this step that we learn that God is willing to show us what we already have inside us, if we are willing to trust Him and ask for His help.  It’s like asking for someone to take the blindfold off so you can look at your self for the first time.  You get to see all the wonderful things inside you that has been there the whole time, it was just hidden behind our own blockades.  We pulled off the blinders, we pulled back the shades…seeing the true self that is there by asking God for His help, we should be ready for the next step – Our personal inventory, but more on that next month.

If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too.

 

 

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These are not intended to offend anyone – some might get a chuckle, some might see where they have gone off the path of serenity and onto the path of self-destruction.
Twelve Steps of a Relapse

1. I decided I could handle any emotional problems if other people would just quit trying to run my life.

2. I firmly believe that there is no greater power than myself and anyone who says differently is insane.

3. I made a decision to remove my will and my life from God, who didn’t understand me anyway.

4. I made a searching and thorough moral inventory of everyone I know, so they couldn’t fool me and take advantage of my good nature.

5. I sought these people out and tried to get them to admit to me, by God, the exact nature of their wrongs.

6. I became willing to help these people get rid of their defects of character.

7. I was humble enough to ask these people to remove their shortcomings.

8. I kept a list of all the people who had harmed me, and waited patiently for a chance to get even.

9. I got even with these people whenever possible except when to do so would get me into trouble.

10. I continue to take everyone’s inventory and when they are wrong, which is most of the time, I promptly make them admit it.

11. Sought through the concentration of my willpower to get God, who didn’t understand me anyhow, to see that my desires were best, and He ought to give me the power to carry them out.

12. Having maintained my emotional problems with these steps, I can thoroughly recommend them to others who don’t want to lose their hard-earned status, but wish to be left alone to practice neurosis in everything they do for the rest of their days.

 

12 days ago was my 9th month recovery birthday.  I feel a little sad that I don’t get the same milestone celebrations as AA members do.  My Al-anon group only does the yearly coins.  I guess there are some Al-anon groups that don’t even do that…So I will just count my blessings.  I never thought those coins could mean something, but after seeing my husband get his – and other get theirs – it makes me want my own little remembrance that:

YES – I can get better.

YES – I can make it through one day at a time.

YES – I can find love, strength, hope and faith again.

YES – I can support my husband without losing myself.

I also have to remember that I don’t need for something to be recognized by someone else to have it mean more to me.  If it is important to me, then that is who I need to get recognition from.  I need to recognize my own self worth.  I also need to make sure that I gibe non solicited recognition out to my husband and others who I see make changes in their lives.  I need to say out loud that I see how far he has come in his recovery.  Him knowing that I see it and had the mind-set to say it will then show to myself and him just how far in my own recovery I have come.

So – here is my 9th month coin.  It’s a Digital one – but that’s OK  – in just 3 short months I will be getting my one year recovery coin.    If you would like your own digital chip, this is where I got mine: http://serenityfound.org/chips/chips.html

We need to have fun in recovery – we need to learn to laugh at ourselves.  I have learned to laugh and have fun – meetings don’t always have to be about sad or bad things.  I think that new comers need to hear about the good things too.  Offers them hope that they will laugh again one day.  Nothing will be posted with the intention to offend – even though that is a risk that I take with every post.  Some people may not like what I have to say, but that’s their choice.  I have a few funny things to post and then maybe do some exploring into what happens when someone has a relapse.

If you would like to post how long you have been in recovery for, your sobriety birthday, or just share words of hope for others – please feel free to do so in the comment box and as always:

If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too. 

 

Open Letter from the Alcoholic, from the pamphlet: Three Views of Al-Anon (P15)

 

I am an alcoholic. I need your help.

Don’t lecture, blame or scold me. You wouldn’t be angry with me for having cancer or diabetes. Alcoholism is a disease, too.
Don’t pour out my liquor; it’s just a waste because I can always find ways of getting more.
Don’t let me provoke your anger. If you attack me verbally or physically, you will only confirm my bad opinion about myself. I hate myself enough already.
Don’t let your love and anxiety for me lead you into doing what I ought to do for myself. If you assume my responsibilities, you make my failure to assume them permanent. My sense of guilt will be increased, and you will feel resentful.
Don’t accept my promises. I’ll promise anything to get off the hook. But the nature of my illness prevents me from keeping my promises, even though I mean them at the time.
Don’t make empty threats. Once you have made a decision, stick to it.
Don’t believe everything I tell you; it may be a lie. Denial of reality is a symptom of my illness. Moreover, I’m likely to lose respect for those I can fool too easily.
Don’t let me take advantage of you or exploit you in any way. Love cannot exist for long without the dimension of justice.
Don’t cover up for me or try in any way to spare me the consequences of my drinking. Don’t lie for me, pay my bills, or meet my obligations. It may avert or reduce the very crisis that would prompt me to seek help. I can continue to deny that I have a drinking problem as long as you provide an automatic escape for the consequences of my drinking.
Above all, do learn all you can about alcoholism and your role in relation to me. Go to open AA meetings when you can. Attend Al-Anon meetings regularly, read the literature and keep in touch with Al-Anon members. They’re the people who can help you see the whole situation clearly.

I love you.
Your Alcoholic

what about Lois…

Cover of "My Name Is Bill W"

When Love Is Not Enough: The Lois Wilson Story Cover of My Name Is Bill W

We watched the movie My name is Bill W. Staring James Woods from 1989.  It made me ask the question, When did Lois start Al-Anon.  How was it started, did she have help?  They made a Movie a few years go, When Love Is Not Enough: The Lois Wilson Story.  I have not been able to find it on netflix so will just have to order the movie and get the Bill W one for my Husband.

I did some reaserch on Al-Anon and here is a little bit of what I found.

Al-Anon was formed in 1951 by Anne B. and Lois W., wife of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) co-founder Bill W. They recognized the need for such an organization as family members living with AA members began to identify their own pathologies associated with their family members’ alcoholism. In the USA, Al-Anon Family Groups incorporated as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization called Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters, Inc.  Alateen took its own name and formation in 1957.

After a while I began to wonder why I was not as happy as I ought to be, since the one thing I had been yearning for all my married life [Bill’s sobriety] had come to pass. Then one Sunday, Bill asked me if I was ready to go to the meeting with him. To my own astonishment as well as his, I burst forth with “Damn your old meetings!” and threw a shoe as hard as I could. This surprising display of temper over nothing pulled me up short and made me start to analyze my own attitudes. … My life’s purpose of sobering up Bill, which had made me feel desperately needed, had vanished. … I decided to strive for my own spiritual growth. I used the same principles as he did to learn how to change my attitudes. … We began to learn that … the partner of the alcoholic also needed to live by a spiritual program. – “Lois’s Story” in How Al-Anon Works

 

I will have to do some more research into Lois – I love learning about history and how things were started.  I love watching those TV shows that show you how they make things, or how something was invented.  It amazes me.  as I learn more about her I will share with you.

 

If you have not seen My Name is Bill w – I highly recommend it.

Also there is a new Bill W movie out, for Those people who live in Arizona.  In Tucson there are showing the movie starting this Friday at the Loft. 

Visit the official movie website

I had never panicked before in the presence of alcohol … then I remembered that in trying to help other people it had helped me too. And for the first time I … said, “Geez, you need another alcoholic to talk to. You need a guy like that just as much as he needs you.” Then came a very strange chain of circumstances …

~ Bill Wilson

 

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