An AA Anniversary — Who’s Counting?

Essential Help

I am coming up on an anniversary of the day was I finally ready to stop drinking. It’s been a while since that day – but not so long I can’t remember how I felt when I went to my first meeting.

Fear propelled me. I was afraid of how I could live without alcohol, and I was afraid of how I would live if I picked up again. Walking into that meeting, I was accepting this was where I needed to go, and resisting crossing over the threshold.

I felt like I was withdrawing from life as I had known it – and it didn’t help that the AA meeting was at a Roman Catholic retreat house.

I couldn’t keep living the way I was, yet I didn’t think I could live the rest of my life without drinking. But I wanted what I saw so many AA’s had – peace. So, I was willing to become willing, and do what others suggested – go to meetings, pray, and don’t drink – today. All the time in those early days, I was just waiting for me to break down and drink.

The compulsion to drink was powerful for the first year. In time, it subsided as alcohol left my system, and I didn’t drink. In time, things got better – not easier – better. More really will be revealed.

If I could make a suggestion:

I was hardheaded about working the steps, both in Al-Anon and AA. Dumb: very dumb.   While I also have found out that while abstinence works, it’s not the same as sobriety: it’s white knuckling versus breathing.

There were many times when I pushed through not drinking instead of working on a step. I indulged dry drunks. I went on costly emotional benders that harmed others as much as I harmed myself. The Twelve Steps are a way of living.

Oh yeah — remember Rule #62!

I thank GOD, who remained on duty, reminding me that a drink would not get me out of any hole into which I was so furiously digging. And I am grateful for the seeds of wisdom that so many planted in meetings.   Hearing others’ experiences and having God’s grace have kept me safe thus far.

I say, thus far because this program is only for today – whether you have ten hours or ten years. And what a day it is, discovering again that the universe does not revolve around you or me. But the One who keeps things in their places is as close as a whisper.

Remember that we deal with alcohol — cunning, baffling, powerful! Without help it is too much for us. But there is One who has all power — that One is God. May you find Him now! How It Works

Dear Reader – Thank you for staying with me this far – if addiction, your own or another’s, is robbing you of sanity, hope and joy – you are not alone. We’ve learned we can’t cure ourselves, or control other people’s choices – we can surrender however to One who both cures, and controls. And Who is kind.


[We are] free to live
the life today that [we’ve] always wanted to live.
~ Joy Through Surrender

Love in Christ,

Sober and Grateful


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An AA Anniversary — Who’s Counting?
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