Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Slipping

Today would have been one of my sponsees' first AA birthday. She called yesterday to tell me that she had been drinking for about a month. Drinking and going to meetings, and still calling me. She was so full of shame it was awful. She was so afraid to tell me that she was drinking.

I told her that she did what alcoholics do. We drink. I told her that I do not judge her and no one else has the right to judge her either. I told her she is an adult woman and I cannot force her to do anything, but I have attended enough funerals and I believe I will attend hers in short order if she continues to drink. She said she would go to a meeting and raise her hand. I will find out today if she did that. I pray she did. Literally, I pray she did. I pray for her every single day. She is such a beautiful person.

I told her that we are not able to keep ourselves sober. Only God can keep us sober. We have to cooperate a little, but that is about it.

That is why you will never ever hear me say....
Keep coming back, it works, IF YOU WORK IT.

Bullshit.

It just works. God can do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. If I was able to WORK to stay sober, I would have gotten sober years before I ruined my marriage, caused trauma to my children, and withstood years of alcoholic misery.

In surrendering to God, and allowing Him to work in my life, I have been able to do things I could never have dreamed. God has fashioned me into a woman I had no idea even existed.

I pray that this beautiful woman can surrender to God and allow Him to work in her life.

"The alcoholic at certain times has no effective mental defense against the first drink. Except in a few rare cases, neither he nor any other human being can provide such a defense. His defense must come from a Higher Power." -- Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 43

8 comments:

dAAve said...

I hope she makes it back and decides to make some changes in her life.

Scott W said...

I think the majority of those that say "it works, if you work it" do it out of rote, and give no thought otherwise. Either you or Pam pointed this out several months ago, now I leave that last part off. And what gets me even more is those that prolong it with "because you're worth it." Bleh.

Prayers said for your slipee.

YamadogGirl said...

I'm glad to hear she told you the truth. I pray for all the girls I sponsor, some of them don't know a Higher Power yet or how to surrender to God. They just know that they have to surrender. Every time one of them goes out, I ask what God's will is for them, will they die or find this new life. It's also not my place to judge, but to love. I have one girl stalling on her 4th, she keeps asking if I'm mad at her. I'm not mad, we all struggle, we've all been there, and only she can do this step, for her.

As far as the "Keep coming back, it works, IF YOU WORK IT." I believe that I am a recovered alcoholic today, BUT that recovery is based on my Spiritual condition, the Program of AA applied to all my affairs, and working with others (AA or not). If I don't apply/work all of these things on a daily basis, I eventually WILL get drunk.

I know today that I had to surrender to God, but back then I didn't know that. I had to listen at meetings, ask questions, take action in the 12 Steps, and learn to pray. I didn't know this when I walked in the door, I thought what I had done all my life was normal, what I do today is normal. I've heard the saying "bring the body the mind will follow", I've seen it work for many people, and I hope it works for your sponsee - you both will be in my prayers.
Love,
YamaDogGirl - Kimberly

indistinct said...

Great topic. The wisdom that I hear or read from members of AA seems to go right to my heart.

yamadoggirl wrote "It's not my place to judge, but to love." Fear drives me to judging. Placing a sponsee or a loved one in God's hands, letting God's will be done is difficult for me. I try everyday, but sometimes I just take it back. When I first came to the rooms, looking for assurance that everything will be okay, I was dissappointed. I learned that people die. That God doesn't magically solve problems. That God doesn't make deals. God's will, plain and simple. Accepting that continues to be a leason I learn.

When i fear, I judge, when I judge, I try to become the higher power, and things crash everywhere around me. I am not God.

I am very grateful for what has happened to me. I don't understand it. But being sober and clean for a few months is an amazing gift. As well, I do not lie awake all night worring. I sleep well, another wonderful gift. All this by giving up, trusting in a power greater than myself. Wow.

Thanks for letting me share.

Pam said...

You know I hear ya on that one sista squash.
It must be SO painful to be drinking, going to meetings and calling your sponsor. What misery.

Syd said...

I'm glad that she called you and talked about her drinking. I can't think of a better thing to do. Thankfully, she has you as well as a HP.

Danny S said...

Nice to see others out here in trenches too - doing the deal as prescribed. Maybe this will help too:

My experience is that when a protégée tells me that they have “slipped” it is while we are working together on the Steps.(If they weren't doing that, they would not be a protogee)

My reaction is always the same, “NO SH&T!” I say. Why? Because it is not beyond expectation.

Real alcoholics will drink, no matter what, until such time as their spiritual awakening. That isn't "Upon arrival" in the Fellowship LOL.

Some seem to get a “grace period” in the beginning - others not. Who cares? We just do our best to keep em’ in the process - It IS a RACE!
Thanks.

Peace,

Danny S

http://recoveredalcoholic.blogspot.com/

ecurb said...

I have been going to AA for a year. I keep busting/slipping. I pray in the morning and at night on my knees, but still I drink. I have a sponsor who has taken me through to the 8th step. Iḿ at the point of giving up and probably dieing a long and sad alcoholic death. I have run out of hope that God will help me.