Alcoholics Anonymous Blog Video October 1 2014
Video October 1 Video
Step ten! "Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it" what an order? There are no orders in recovery. October is all about step ten as part of my yearly walk through all of the steps on a monthly basis. And apologies for my absence over recent days and weeks. Even in recovery after ten years, sometimes anyone can hit a brick wall and wonder if we have anything to say.
A friend, a psychiatrist once said to me back in 1996, he told me that I had been suffering from an anxiety state, followed by a marked reactive depression, and was indicative of some sort of chemical imbalance. I suppose it is better described as a nervous breakdown and burnout. The denial around this particular state of affairs put me in harm's way, trying to be the man I used to be, and there was no hope of ever being that person again. A nervous breakdown and burnout will do that to anybody. So sometimes when I hit a brick wall, feel a bit out of it, a welcome break from some activities is necessary. Fellowship meetings or Facebook? I didn't feel able to do both, so meetings took a priority over anything I might try do.
And of course all the things I do, with regard to family, friends and supporting others is part of who I am. And at the same time when I cannot do something, for whatever reason, the serenity prayer always helps. An end to isolation, that is what Fellowship does if I engage and be part of something far bigger than me. That is the wisdom, the experience strength and hope I receive every single time I go to a meeting. It may not have been the wisdom connected with any problems I might have in that day, but it may be useful to other people I know, or indeed to me at some later date. The most important part of meetings is support, connection and sharing the truth as we see it right now.
Lucky me! It was a topic meeting, and I suggested "gratitude, even when life is difficult." And so it was me who shared first this morning. I was still shaking when I started speaking because I had just had what is known as a "hypo" caused by injecting too much insulin without eating my breakfast. So a spoonful of honey was necessary to bring my blood sugars back up to normal or even higher than normal. But the awful feeling of going unconscious was ebbing away. Sharing this, is part of the truth I face when I forget to do something like eat my breakfast first and then take my insulin to treat the type I diabetes condition. And of course sharing about family and the fact that my mother seems to be stable just now, and the medications are helping with her heart condition.
So gratitude even when life is difficult, which is really connected to living in the moment, step ten and emotional and spiritual well-being one day at a time. The absolute truth shared back to me and everyone, it was very helpful to know I wasn't the only one in the room with difficult life situations going on. Of course I can't share the specifics, but it really helped me realise just how difficult life is every day for everyone.
And in recent weeks I've come into contact with quite a few newcomers, which takes me back to steps 1 to 3 being so important in early days. Even though people are confused and cannot really understand Fellowship on first contact, once they realise that most of us are a friendly bunch, things start to happen and somehow sobriety begins for all our new people. Helping others is a restorative for anyone who is feeling "under the weather, all that life is difficult."
Step ten and gratitude, even when life is difficult feels like it is an essential part of everyday living. If I didn't have step ten, and an understanding about gratitude, life would not only be difficult, it would or could become impossible, because my thinking brain would overtake the emotional and spiritual which is the very essence of life itself. So easy to forget how to love, how to be loved back when we are stuck in the daily doings and forgetting that we are human beings first and foremost. And always just for today.
Step Ten Reading 12 & 12
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