June 18 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 6 Spiritual Willingness Alcoholics Anonymous Today's AA daily reflection: "a fellowship of freedom where our common welfare finds room to grow in the society of personal freedom." Yes, freedom as an individual in a society which opens the door in all aspects of living, our society governed by trustees on behalf of all of us, the group conscience always being our source of inspiration and suggestions…
An area of concern to me over the years has been sponsorship. The AA suggestions on sponsorship are very clear, equality in a relationship where one person helps another person understand the AA steps and how these principles work in all our affairs. Sometimes without realising issues of co-dependency, when suggestions become instructions is very unhelpful. My sponsors who are alive today, do not hinder my freedom of choice in any way…
Who are my sponsors today? "The man on the Clapham omnibus!" Described as a reasonable individual able to weigh up situations to do with people places and things. A sounding board, within the fellowship there are many who help me with issues as they arise on a daily basis. The sponsor to me through the steps, he perished of natural causes some time back, he was an equal and a good friend in recovery. And anyone with the wisdom to know the difference between can do and cannot do is usually my sponsor today…
The steps work if we work them and some say, "work them because you're worth it." The real deal in recovery is that life experience will show each of us how the steps work as life experience develops. The steps open up a new world, where we are no longer at the mercy of our old ideas, attitudes and actions which led to self-destruction. We can live life on life's terms, sometimes good, sometimes bad and sometimes very ugly. Most importantly, we learn our choices based on the reality of our situation and not some fantasy constructed today…
AA Daily Reflection: A fellowship of freedom... if only men were granted absolute liberty, and were compelled to obey no one, they would then voluntarily associate themselves in the common interest. [As Bill Sees It]
When I no longer live under the dictates of another or of alcohol, I live in a new freedom. When I release the past and all the excess baggage I have carried for so very long, I come to know freedom. I have been introduced into a life and a fellowship of freedom. The Steps are a “recommended” way of finding a new life, there are no commands or dictates in A.A. I am free to serve from desire rather than decree. There is the understanding that I will benefit from the growth of other members and I take what I learn and bring it back to the group. The “common welfare” finds room to grow in the society of personal freedom.
A fellowship of freedom... for me and writing just for me, fellowship connects me to wisdom to be sober, be unique and authentic, find the best choice sooner rather than later. I have a right to be here, right sized and human. One similarity, valuing all diversity and difference for today...
Striving to be the best? Better to strive to do the best we can today. Open, honest and willing to live to good conscience, understanding what we can do in unity, service and recovery. Experiencing life as it is, the spiritual connection to now...
June 18 2007
Old Timers - Sometimes ‘Bad’ DonInLondon ‘Day In the Life’
‘Bad’ is a relative term these days, sometimes used and utilised to mean good as well as bad. And our fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous we have Old Timers knocking around who have been in the fellowship for years and have lots of practical wisdom to impart. Old timers are somewhat venerated and often rightly for the wisdom of the years in recovery. Tonight though we had a ‘Bad’ ‘Old timer’ who was full of humorous stories of their wicked advancement in recovery.
For every straightforward comment and aside he had an opposite view gained through years of succeeding and then falling out of the fellowship, It was funny as well as serious and I felt he had good points to share and funny ones too. We need laughter as much as wisdom sometimes and the meeting had been light in parts, and then heavy and quite serious. So the reposts from this venerable old timer were quite pertinent and made us all smile. I guess sometimes it can be inappropriate to share so, and sometimes I feel I may go a bit too far towards funny when some are definitely not in the mood.
Due to yesterday’s minor accident, well in human terms as we both walked away with a few bruises, the damage to the bike is sadly beyond repair, and it’s just the way it is. And it’s a blinking nuisance but not the end of the world. And it’s a bit odd that the bike has ended up this way just now. And it’s giving me some pain in the feet as well as my head.
I had planned to cycle down to the Chelsea Festival open concert, and then decided to do a round robin trip using the bus and tube to include Covent Garden as well as the King’s road. I managed it slowly. And it was worth it to get out and take some more photo’s. A painful but rewarding trip. Slow and determined it was, and I realise now just how useful it’s been to have the bike here and anywhere which cuts out much walking which really aggravates the diabetic neuropathy.
So By Tonight
A friend of mine has just rung up to offer me their bike for a while. And it’s really very kind of them. And at the same time I find it very hard to deprive them of something they are really enjoying and it’s a new way of them getting about and extending the range of their activities. Even though they say its ok, I don’t feel right about it at all. And this is just me. So I will sleep on it tonight.
I suspect there is some part of me which just does not want to deprive another person of an obvious pleasure even though it will help me get about. I am not good with help most of the time and it makes me look deep inside at me and my outlooks. And it makes me question whether I am making too much of my problem and then I seem to fall into traps around what if’s and but. It seems this is a conundrum which I cannot resolve tonight. And there is some false pride and ego, and fear of fuss in me.. I prefer to resolve things and realise this one I cannot right now tonight. Which now makes me smile because it needs no resolution just yet.
The issue is current and somewhat worrying. The problem any single person who is homeless and is dealing with some incapacities which won’t go away, well I feel a bit vulnerable too about this one.
I do work hard to keep going and I am not a quitter when it comes to trying and endeavour. I have an appointment with my GP tomorrow and it I feel inadequate and exposed. I feel like I should be further along, be more adept now I am sober. And yet with depression and the type 1 Diabetes, it feels like a well worn story for me because I live it every day. The consequences do leave me wondering what next. And it’s very awkward to define what nest when I don’t know from one day to another just how difficult things are going to be. So I hope a discussion with my Doctor will help me understand what I need convey to the assessment practice run by the Department of Work and Pensions. Indeed I am at a loss really to see what is next. So this feels indecisive and quite difficult.
Several Things all at Once
So mobility remains an issue. Health is not going to improve in three ways, and housing too is a topical dilemma. So quite a few big ones for yours truly.
I know I may not solve these issues, but I know I need share and ask and be open to what next.
The housing issue, well it seems by mistake or some computer error that I have bid for something in the last week. I just checked the website and had no idea there is a bid by me, apparently and I don’t quite understand. So a visit to the Town Hall too to arrange sometime quick.
Yes it feels very disturbing. I know people do their utmost to help and still I feel awkward about all this. And somehow it seems to me that I feel less than and somehow wrong footed. And it truly is to do with acceptance of life on life’s terms.
I need it tonight or I shall not sleep. And in the end I have gratitude for everything. Help to get into recovery, help with health issues and I try not pester people so probably do suffer unduly sometimes when there is help. It makes me realise I have to accept incapacity, as well as wanting to get on and also just for peace of mind to know I can be safe somewhere and worry less about being homeless and somewhat indigent.
Without them I would not be here. And the gratitude I feel is beyond words.
It’s been hard and very overwhelming sometimes to realise people care and want to help. And it’s been difficult and humbling in the true sense to find people wanting to help, even when I do not know how to ask. And maybe this is a time to understand more.
Doctors and Hospital
Have done their level best too. I have not seen my GP regularly, and once in a year. I have always found my Doctor hard to see, and I am at a loss to know why presently, other than experiences have not been good, and that is my doing as much as theirs I suspect. When a recovering alcoholic shares their concerns about ailments, the assumption seems it’s all in the head, and it took a long while for me to be listened to over the diabetes as much as anything. And as most of the routine help has been excellent and with my local hospital. Professional and very caring, I feel it’s been hard to restore my faith in my Doctor and what happens next if indeed anything.
I am very up and down, and this sense of foreboding is less than last before, yet I know more and feel more able to understand what is going on for me. And I just have no clue to agenda’s. And as always these days the only agenda I have is one day long, keep safe, do what I can and try endeavour some more.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
I have thought some more. And the more I understand therapeutic process the more I am suspicious of cognitive behavioural therapy. It is a long form of pulling up one’s own socks, giving ourselves a kick the up the rear, and encouraging false premise and promises. Like fake it to make it. Like thinking will change feeling. Indeed we always feel first and then think. A process running in reverse maybe for cognitive Acolytes. But appealing to the intellect, egocentric, empowered controllers of life. Sadly we humans don’t work well backwards and the reason why cognitive is a poor utility for me and fellowship is far superior, is simply I know the difference and have learned this wisdom from ’Good and Bad Old Timers’ and what they have shown me in recent years. Long may they continue. I ‘feel’ content they will …
Step 6 "Spiritual Willingness" Reading Video Link:
wrongs. Chapter 6, Into Action, Big Book From: Page 72 Thru: Page 75, the bottom of the page. 12 And 12 Step 5."
June ~ Video Reading Chapter Six Into Action Link:
I do not speak for Alcoholics Anonymous I speak for myself. Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of unique and authentic people who speak for themselves where they will to share experience, strength and hope about recovery on a daily basis. Anonymity affords sanctuary to find how to live sober and be open, honest and willing to learn life day by day. For me "truth," "love" and "wisdom" offer the best spiritual experience by living reality today. Into the fabric of recovery from alcoholism are woven the Twelve Steps and the Traditions: steps to be open, honest and willing to learn, traditions to live unity, service and recovery.
Spiritual principles ~ Forgiveness Acceptance Surrender Faith Open-mindedness Honesty Willingness Moral-inventory Amends Humility Persistence Spiritual-growth Service