Alcoholics Anonymous Blog/Video Sept 27 DonInLondon Step 9 " Amends Into Action"
September 27, 2013: "building relationships and being inclusive in our living is critical for everyone on the planet." Quite a bold statement when often we are confronted by and helpful people, places and things going on which we cannot fathom. Forgiveness for the way people behave towards us when it feels bad and ugly is a truly good way to live. Of course, I could be wrong!
Everybody in the UK anticipates that the national health service, the NHS, will be there and able to support anyone needing help. Usually this expectation is confounded by the actual experience of what happens if we are ill. After all these years of technology, coupled with the professionalism of GPs, and professionalism within hospitals is being undermined in so many ways. This week is proving to be an education to me. I was hoping for a smooth week, go to the medical practice, get my results and then see what I need to work on between now and November when I go to hospital for the specialised check-up. A personal amends to make to myself: I need to try to keep on forgiving or I will shut the door on those who have answers and can help me one day at a time. If I don't forgive, anger and resentment will keep me away from those I need in order to maintain my emotional, physical and spiritual health.
My current medical practice has over 7000 patients on the books. That's a lot of people. I hope you don't all get ill at once and I hope their situations are less complicated than mine. Monday of this week started with my agenda of getting results and a repeat bimonthly prescription which never changes, but is often disrupted by IT glitches and GPs/locums who don't understand how the IT works. I got my results back, which are better than they have been for a while so I am pleased. Less pleased to have to take some other tests connected with low blood pressure, dizzy spells, and some digestive issues. So I will be off to take more tests this morning and try ensure my prescriptions are back on track, currently no expectation of achieving this right now. Forgive everybody everything!
Two invitations this week I cannot keep. And these two invitations would have been really good for me and hopefully can be rescheduled. I was very lucky yesterday to get to see my sister; she was in very good form and on top of lots of different things going on in her life. I do admire what she does. And my sister is very supportive and understanding about life being difficult, not only for herself, she is hugely supportive of other people including me and I have immeasurable gratitude personally. And we can laugh, and we can be sensitive and we can be caring and inclusive. Inclusion in family, community and society is so vital to the survival of any individual. That's how it works and gives purpose to life. We all give in our own way, and receive in our own way.
On the plus side I also got to two meetings this week, when I get to a meeting I realise the benefit. We will always hear good bad and ugly things in meetings. We will hear the opinions and beliefs of other people as they express their version of truth. I only say it is a version of the truth, and I only express belief and opinion, and sometimes it is the truth. With inclusion, we start to build a better outlook and as we all express the truth as we see it, we will find common ground some of the time and conflict even at the fundamental level about what the truth is today. I might be right today, and of course tomorrow it could be wrong! Forgive everybody everything!
The more we know, very often we come to the conclusion we really don't know that much. And we can become more included by accepting that we don't know very much and many people can provide much more information, experience, strength and hope on any given day. And I mention again because it's quite important to me that anyone can be guilty of contempt prior to investigation.
Contempt prior to investigation! A BBC programme highlighted that medical professionals do not often listen to patients who have physical problems if they already have mental health issues recorded on their computer. The BBC programme discussed with a Prof of psychiatry and a patient how general practitioners see the mental health issue, and then ignore any physical problems the patient might express. I felt a lot better hearing and seeing what was being shared because my general practitioners cannot often get beyond the mental health and recovery perspective, they stop listening and treat me as intellectually challenged and mentally deficient. I do have chemical deficiencies in my brain chemistry; it no longer has alcohol sloshing about in it. The brain in my head no longer numbed and no longer full of prejudice especially self-prejudice these days. There is however an acute awareness that medical people generally are prejudiced to some others they serve and the listening skills are almost non-existent.
Sometimes the truth can be elusive. And the on-going experience we face in recovery is to be open, honest and willing to keep on working with the truth and not to give up when others are ignorant and unhelpful. As a poet wrote, "even the dull and the ignorant, they too have their story." Thank God I don't have to live their story, the life of an ignorant and dull individual may be self-serving, and it is not for me. So I will deploy and utilise experience strength and hope of step six and step seven. I can make it a step six day, where fear pride and ego will fuck me up, or try for a step seven day, courage to change, faith in doing the next right thing and keep on being confident that eventually I will be heard and listened to today. If not, better to forgive everyone everything and let them face the consequences of their actions today. I don't have to live like them.
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