Linda G January 4, 2016 One Day at a Time in Al-Anon, Courage To Change, Hope For Today, Beside Blessings
One Day at a Time in Al-Anon
If I say "Of myself I can do nothing," I am asserting that I intend to seek help. When is the help for my problem of living with an alcoholic? I will find it with my fellow-members in Al-Anon. There I will find understanding, strength and hope. There I will learn to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can. My first step will be to have a program: I will go to every possible Al-Anon meeting, I will read Al-Anon literature, I will keep an open mind, I will apply what I learned to every day life.
My own way of thinking often deceives me. I can see but a little way. When I realize that people are learning to solve their problems in over 26,000 Al-Anon groups all over the world, wouldn't I be punishing myself needlessly to reject this wonderful way of life?
"Sharing experiences widens one's horizons and opens out new and better ways to deal with difficulties. There is no need to solve them alone."
Courage To Change
When I first found Al-Anon I was desperate and lonely. I yearned for the serenity that others in the meeting so obviously possessed. When members shared about the tools that had worked for them, I paid close attention.
Here is what I heard: Go to meetings and share when you can; work all the Step, but not all at once--start with Step One; get a Sponsor; read some Al-Anon literature every day; use the phone to reach out between meetings. Gradually I took each of these suggestions and began to see real changes in my life. I began to believe my life could amount to more than a string of painful days to be survived. Now I had resources that help me to deal with even the most difficult situations. I came to see that with the help of my Higher Power, I could handle anything that came to pass and even grow as I did so. In time, the tools and principles of the program helped me gain the serenity I had long desired.
Al-Anon gives me the tools I can use to achieve many goals, including serenity, sanity, and detachment with love. And Al-Anon members who share their experience, strength, and hope show me how to put these tools to work in my life.
"Daily vigilance will turn out to be a small price to pay for my peace of mind."
The Dilemma of the Alcoholic Marriage
Hope For Today
Step One: "We admitted we were powerless over alcohol--that our lives had become unmanageable."
What I do not admit in Step One is as important as what I do admit. I do not admit that I am a failure. I may feel like a failure, but I've learned in this program that feelings are facts. If I stop to reflect, I realize that I'm not diminished and I admit my powerlessness over alcohol. In fact, in some important way, I join the rest of the human race because were all powerless over something at one time or another.
When I admit my life is unmanageable, I don't admit that I am a bad person. In my attempts to maintain the delusion of exercising power where I am powerless, my life is become disorderly. Although I may have temporarily lost control of my life, I have not committed a crime. I need only apply Step One to begin to regain my serenity.
Thought for the Day
Step One encourages me to build my life in a balanced perspective.
"With the understanding that alcoholism is a disease, and with the realization that we are powerless over it, as well as over other people, we are ready to do something useful and constructive with our own lives."
Alcoholism, the Family Disease, p. 12
Serendipity occurs when something beautiful breaks into the monotonous and the mundane. The serendipitous life is marked by "surprisability " and spontaneity. When we lose our capacity for either, we settle into life's ruts. We expect little and we're seldom disappointed.
Though I have walked with God for several decades, I must confess I still find much about Him incomprehensible and mysterious. He dots our pilgrimage from verse to heaven with amazing serendipities.
You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing.
Linda Gorham Yankton South Dakota