Monday, 5 August 2013

Alcoholics Anonymous | August 4 | DonInLondon | Step 8 "Amends And Willing"

August 4, 2013: "recovery: a loose-fitting garment, not Spandex!" I needed a meeting Saturday morning, and the reason was quite simple, everything was okay. And when everything is okay, when I am not hungry, angry, lonely or tired, it's a good reason to be in company. And it was too early to ring around and say hello on a Saturday morning when people were either sleeping or engaged in other early Saturday morning activities. And I was aware of a meeting which I like not far from where I live.

Getting to the meeting, I saw people on the way to the meeting I knew, and when I got to the meeting someone I met seven years ago on their first day invites me to sit next to them. We have a chat before the meeting starts; news is full of good bits, bad bits and profoundly ugly bits. And that's life, full of good bad and ugly happening all day long. Interestingly the good and all it entails meant my friend could deal with the bad and ugly bits quite well, even though life was not going to go their way. Sober, and another day above ground, and a way forward into an unknown future is often the best we can hope for.

A wonderful meeting, where for me and the majority connected and the overall atmosphere was very positive and loving. People do have all the different elements of life going on; generally life is not turning out quite the way we expected. And what a surprise, that life is not turning out the way be expected, some of us were still trying too hard, had our foot hard down on the accelerator pedal trying to prove to the rest of the world that we are good enough, rather than accepting that we are good enough now and don't have to try make everything perfect for everybody else. My suggestion to a friend, another friend, was simply to take their foot off the gas pedal, and even move over to the passenger seat and let somebody else in on the action.

There are a multitude of things that we need to do in recovery. And the more sober we are, the more we tend to fill our days with good actions based on good intentions. And then, often because we have always been very capable people, we keep on taking on more projects and saying yes to more things and getting into a complete overwhelming feeling of drowning. Drowning in good intent and frustrated that we cannot do everything not only for ourselves, we can't do everything for everybody else either. And so we stretch ourselves over and over again, just in case we might be letting somebody down.

The loose-fitting garment of recovery can become a straitjacket, or like a spandex outfit which constrains and keeps everything in and lets nothing out. I must admit I have not tried spandex outfits, some people say they feel quite good. I prefer my loose-fitting garments, and emotionally and spiritually loose-fitting rather than rigid or constraint I have room for growth. There was only room for growth providing I don't take on too much without letting something else go. And my understanding is that in the moment of now we are operating at 100% of our capacity. So if in the moment of now we are operating at 100% capacity emotionally and spiritually, when we take something on, we need to let go something else all we are constrained yet again and out of balance.

After having a wonderful meeting, seeing really good people, that is everybody in the meeting, having good bad and ugly times, I do feel that many came away with a good outlook. Of course I cannot speak for the people in the meeting or what they said. And then I met another friend after the meeting, who had been to a Friday night meeting which had been a waste of time in their opinion, until they were able to compare it with the Saturday morning meeting. A particularly "bad meeting one day," followed by a really good meeting the next day. And we can see the difference between the two, the difference being mainly how we were in each of those meetings. Sometimes we just don't connect, and then other days we can connect so strongly, the world's wonderful all over again.

Alcoholics Anonymous Videos, AA is for Alcoholics, AA 12 Steps, Addiction And Recovery, DonInLondon, Don Oddy,

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