Tuesday, May 11, 2010

May 11 - Winter Weather Advisory

My lilac bush is almost in full bloom. And today we have a winter weather advisory. We may get a considerable amount of snow over the next 24 hours. If it starts snowing, maybe I will cut all of the flowers off of my lilac bush and bring them indoors so that I may enjoy them for a few days. For the last 2 years the buds have frozen and I have had no lilacs - I had such hope this year.

I will go out and run my four miles this morning. Perhaps that will lighten my mood. I am profoundly discouraged this morning.

About a month or six weeks ago, I had made the decision to quit blogging. I prayed about it. God sent to me a woman, a terrible drunk, in despair. I took that as a message that my blog had a mission. So, I persevered - happily. This has not worked out as I had hoped for her. And now I have upset her.

I have thought and prayed about this for the past 12 hours or so. I have even lost sleep over this. Is this a personal affront to me? No. I have never met this woman. I have no investment in whether she goes to AA. But I do care about her because she is another alcoholic - just like me.

God bless her. God bless them all. I wish them all the best. Really I do.

I know that AA does not claim to have the only answer to alcoholism.

It is just that in my 25 + years of experience in AA, I have watched too many people waltz out the door with their magical answer, only to go to their funerals later. I wish this were not so. I wish it with all my heart.

I also wish I had a blog with a pretty little incoherent blather about how happy I am and how much I love everyone. But alas, that is not me.

I have pretty much one message.

I was a terrible drunk. I drank daily for 18 years. I could not stop. I tried on my own for years and years, and could not do it. One day, I picked up the phone and called Alcoholics Anonymous. That day was July 24, 1984. I have not had a drink since that day. I believe that God did for me what I could not do for myself - and got me to AA, where I was able to get the help I needed. A huge part of that help - for me - was to help others.

The Grace of God and the Program of Alcoholics Anonymous.... that's my message.

I have edited this post. I have upset the woman I wrote about and for that I am deeply sorry.

18 comments:

shadowlands said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
shadowlands said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mary LA said...

I share your heartache -- two friends of mine have relapsed after seeking out quick painless 'cures'.

Alcoholism is a terrible thing.
Lilacs have the most wonderful fragrance.

Carverlane said...

I read you faithfully and I am still sober! It's important for me to be able to come here and see that we can live normal, happy, purposeful lives. Even with snow on lilac bushes.

Kim from sAn Antonio

shadowlands said...

I expect you will delete this comment too, which will re-inforce my views on the problems within the AA fellowship (notice I did not say the program). I have not sought out a kwik fix Mary, the acupuncture was a suggestion to supplement a government funded recovery program that I attended to be assessed by medically trained rehab professionals, who also include the twelve step program, but every one who attends has to be recommended, thereby avoiding any dangerous situations with anonymous people ( something that happened to me in AA with horrifying results). You are misleading people about me, by what you are writing. You have no idea of my experience within AA, how long it lasted or how to judge me. If you keep removing my comments, maybe it would be better to remove the whole post, because frankly, it is becoming rather farcical and deceptive and hurtful on a day I was told to rest and reflect. One person already read my previous comments here and got back to me, apologizing for what was written, seeing it as I do. This person is a sober member of AA, I believe, yet manages to at least listen. Boy, I'll be careful before I ever speak to an AA member again.

Mary Christine said...

I removed your comments out of respect for your anonymity. I will leave this one.

Willa said...

I read you almost everyday as well. I'm glad YOU were HERE for ME. Thank God, because you helped me realize that people somewhere had feelings and a few experiences just like I did. And for that I am ever SO GRATEFUL, to you Mary Christine. Thank you.

Syd said...

I have found it best to keep what I write about others so generic that it won't be recognized. But I have failed at that some days. As long as I keep the focus on me, I'm okay. Hang in there. Misunderstandings occur. Amends can be made. Thanks for being here and being true what has helped you.

chitowngreg said...

We all make mistakes, but as long as we're well intentioned, we've just got to make amends and move on. You obviously care deeply and do a lot of good for a lot of people with your writing. Hang in there!

shadowlands said...

I've replied to your email Mary. Let me know if you receive it. Please don't let this build into anything bad for us. Pray for me, as I will for you. I can't bear the thought of you being upset over my choices or feeling responsible for a different outcome. There are reasons that I can't go into, but it is not a failing on your part, so don't beat yourself up.

Thank you for all your caring too.

wendy said...

ditto what Willa wrote...

hope your day improved.

drybottomgirl said...

Last Friday we had four inches of heavy wet snow. It took my lilac trees to the ground. By Saturday the snow had melted and they made it. The blooms are doing fine, I hope yours make it. I just celebrated 90 days. My sponsor has over 20 years of sobriety. And yes, I express how good I feel in my blog, but this program is work. I drank for 20 plus years, and I too made the call to AA. I knew I was finally ready when I walked through those doors. I work very hard at my program. I also see people come for a few weeks then disappear. AA was all I had left, I failed over and over at stopping to drink. It's because I didn't even understand the nature of the disease. People ask my why AA works: I tell them be open to change, be willing to listen, and be willing to work. There is no easier softer way. But with personal growth there never is. Your blog has helped me many a time. You make a difference every day!!

Ed G. said...

About lilacs, I can't agree - I'm terribly allergic to them so every year that I get a day or 2 reprieve from their blooms, I'm grateful.

About drunks and having a solution in AA, I'm absolutely with you. I'm glad I can seem to be useful to some. I'm sorry that others can't find a solution (in or out of AA).

I ask God today to help me be useful. You too.

Blessings and aloha...

Bobby said...

Thank you for your blog. When you introduce yourself to a public forum like blogging then you are going to offend someone at sometime. You have to weigh the good you do and the people you reach who benefit from your stories. You can't please everyone, but you shouldn't let one person discourage you from helping many. That's what apologies and forgiveness are for. Thanks again for your blog.

dAAve said...

It's too bad she was upset. I'm sure that was never intentional.
Some (many, it seems) are just not ready to hear the message. It took me many years to hear it.

I personally am glad you're still blogging. We both have a lot of time and effort invested in this thing.

Pam said...

I see I've missed some drama.
I've asked God to remove all the people in AA that cause grief to the new comers, who use the meetings as a hunting ground and who dirty the honest heartfelt good intentions of others. Unfortunatly, he continues to send drunks to the fellowship.
Perhaps this young woman will find a group of recovered alcoholis with a genuine message of spiritual principles REAL SOON and she will understand your position much better.
REAL IMPORTANT MESSAGE MARY BERRY: I got a messed up haircut last week and had to go back last night and have my hair CHOPPED OFF! It's right below my ears for heavens sake......I NOT HAPPY!

Scott said...

All you can do MC is be honest and kind and be yourself. I know that's probably coming across as somewhat trite and over simplified but is it really? And, if I know anything about you from reading you the past 4+ years, I know you're honest and kind.

Your experience is all you have as a frame of reference for your recovery, that's all you can truly share. Go with it and keep coming back :-)

Scott said...

oh, and there's something to be said for the fact that you've expressed your regret and feel badly for having offended someone. I think there's something important in that :-)