Alcoholics Anonymous Blog Video August 2 2014
Eighth month, eighth step: listing amends and be willing to make them. Being willing! Before I found Fellowship, I had no concept of what it meant to be hungry, angry lonely and tired. And yet all those years, hungry angry lonely or tired, applied and to fill the gap inside, alcohol, relationships, working and being the best I could possibly be seemed the answer. I felt when I got there, wherever "there" would be, that would be the place and everything would be okay.
When we are unaware of what is missing, and then become aware that what has been missing is very simple: how to love, how to be loved back and find useful endeavours along the way. It was never about getting to a place where everything would be okay, it really was about the journey. And the journey is simply the progress we make, the people we learn how to love, and we become lovable in this emotional and spiritual living of life one day at a time. I never knew this, which is why trying to fill the emptiness with romance and finance, just made me more lonely and then drift into an ocean of alcohol.
I can remember leaving one company and moving to another company which offered thrilling prospects. At the time it was a monumental change. Romance at the time, a partner who I knew needed their space and would go off into another future without me. I was badly behaved, rebelling in the same way that another who felt equally adrift. The immediate confession, the horrible feelings, heartbroken to the point of undermining the value of love which was certainly there. And although I was forgiven within days, I was broken and holding on when I had no entitlement to being loved. And I was right, and it all went wrong. And I'm sure, although it took many years, forgiveness became a two way Street. And even today forgiveness continues. There is a huge difference between lust and passion, and love and cherishing. And being able to love and being able to cherish is where I am today. And with a smile, I am still single and at the same time content with life in the moment of now.
I can remember someone speaking some years ago about breakups and the horrible feelings of anger and frustration, horrible depression caused by separation from partners. This someone is dead now, but their road to forgiveness was understanding why his partner, his wife had left him. Speaking with great feeling that she had the strength of character to move on, and although the pain at the time was immense, the outcome for him was space to get well and become human again. And he was able to share this amends by thanking her for leaving. Because she had to leave for her own sanity. And this gave him space, to realise the can do and cannot do in recovery and although we may desire certain outcomes, the outcomes are probably never what we expect. I only heard recently that he had died of natural causes, but his sharing of experience, strength and hope about separation and being grateful ultimately, made a huge difference to me, and painfully, that it was never "all about me" at all.
Step eight, making that list of amends thoroughly, and then the willingness on top takes quite a while, and the source of the information comes probably in step four. I had selective memory for quite a while about who deserved amends, and when I stopped thinking of those who deserved amends, and got back to the nitty-gritty of what happened, amends became more apparent, which are not about me at all in the sense of closure, it was about accepting my part where matters had gone wrong and led me into thinking and bad behaviour. Unfortunately, the list of amends became longer, before it became a shorter and more appropriate number. Taking the blame for everything, through to accepting where I was at fault made everything more pertinent and clear. Not an easy process, and amends made sometimes in the moment these days, and when recollections afford, there is still more work to be done.
Life is never easy, and life is difficult. Thankfully, we have step 10 to be utilised in the moment of now, even though sometimes we need go backwards and utilise any of the steps at any time to keep our side of the Street clean.
Step Eight Reading 12 And 12
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