Sober since April 6, 2006


Friday, November 03, 2006


TGFC: Thank God for Coffee! I'll be needing it over the next few weeks. My department will be working 7am-7pm Monday-Saturday through the end of November ... and possibly into December. Yippee. I'm just grateful to have a job, to be paid by the hour, and that I can still squeeze in my regular 8:00 meetings.

It was another awesome meeting at my homegroup tonight. I'm so grateful for everyone there! I feel like such a newbie. I can't read the Big Book fast enough, though I've read it already a few times. It's just too much to remember.

I read the Big Book before I came to my first AA meeting. I didn't want to bother going to an AA meeting without knowing if it could help me. I knew I was powerless over alcohol and that my life was unmanageable. But I considered AA to be just a punishment for drivers charged with DUI/DWI -- that REAL alcoholics (such as myself) are hopeless nutcases who either drink themselves to death or die in asinine accidents worthy of Darwin Award nomination.

If not for the Big Book, I would have never come to believe that anything could restore me to sanity. But when I read the Doctor's Opinion and Bill's Story, I saw that I shared a common experience -- and then I saw hope! When it said at the end of Bill's Story that he was the founder of AA, I cried out of gratitude for the first time in a long time. I came to believe that AA could help me.

So I don't understand how or why newcomers keep coming back to AA meetings when they haven't read the Big Book yet. If all I did was come to my first meeting, be accosted by an overzealous mob of well-intentioned people, and read the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions on the wall, I would have been scared off. The mob would have been instantly written off as fanatics.

Besides, what is so hope-spawning about the Steps or Traditions for a newcomer? What alcoholic has ever enjoyed reading rules and guidelines anyway? Sure, we also read the Ninth Step Promises, but those sound like too-good-to-be-true sales pitches to newcomers. Maybe I'm too cynical, but that would have also turned me away if I had not already been convinced that the program works.

We all arrive to AA in our own unique ways, and no one way is better than another. I guess I'm having a hard time identifying with newcomers who didn't arrive at AA the way that I did. I don't really know what to say or do to encourage them. I really don't understand why they keep coming back.

What made you keep coming back?

Today, I'm especially grateful for ...

  • being 211 days sober
  • going to my homegroup tonight
  • AA buddies online and off
  • my cool family
  • finally finding out what's been making me sick (I've been breathing insulation in my car ... the vent is spewing particles and small chunks into the cabin, but I didn't notice until recently when I started my car in the daylight.)
  • getting to sleep in tomorrow
  • God, who provides what I need (not necessarily what I want) when I'm ready to handle it



Thank God for coffee is right! I once was afraid I scared away a newcomer with all the handouts and material I was giving them but it turns out they did come back and they said the speaker scared them

Debbie said...

Maybe they have no where else to go.

I still get scared off momentarily. I've never gotten used to the circle hand-holding thing. I keep waiting for someone to pass out Girl Scout cookies and milk.

Mary Christine said...

I keep coming back so that I can meet people like you!