Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Knock, knock, knock - POLICE!

At 12:50 a.m., I heard quiet men's voices very near my bedroom window. I was just starting to wake up and wonder who and what, when I heard the knocking at my next door neighbor's - and then the shout "Police!" I came to my window and heard their exchange with the girl next door... the girl who now lives alone since her parents have abandoned their house. They were looking for her brother, the young man who was last led away in handcuffs on another sleepless night in June. Do you know how hard it is to go back to sleep after being woken like this? They searched the house but didn't find him. Oh, please dear Lord, let these people move away. I have lost more sleep over this young man than all three of my children, from infancy on, put together.

Last night I had a long telephone conversation with one of my sponsees who absolutely astounded me when she casually threw this little line into a sentence - "the longer I stay sober, the worse my life gets." I asked her if she thought it would get better if she had a drink. She said no, but I wonder how it is that a sober person would say such a thing. And, of course, I asked her.

She is dismayed that she isn't making more money. She is dismayed that her husband doesn't make more money. She is dismayed that her lawn is looking bad. She is dismayed that she doesn't always love the people she works with.

This is a woman who was at death's door 6 years ago. She could no longer WALK. I won't go into more details because I don't have the right to, even though you don't know who I am talking about.

I don't even know how to respond to that, except I am glad we weren't eyeball to eyeball, because I might have taken her by the shoulders and shaken her.

Sobriety is not about having a high-paying job. It is not about having a nice house, car, husband/wife, lawn, and stuff. It is about 1. (NUMBER ONE) staying sober - no matter what. 2. Matching calamity with serenity - that means things don't always go our way, but we learn to deal with life's problems. 3. Trusting God, that he will care for us, and may sometimes take us to places we hadn't wanted or expected. 4. Learning to think of others rather than ourselves. 5. Being grateful for our sobriety because we remember what it was to not be sober. (this list is not necessarily in order)

I could go on and on. But I won't.

I think this sage advice works well for us:
Happiness is not having what you want, it is wanting what you have. (Rabbi Hyman Schachtel)
People are about as happy as they make up their minds to be. (Abe Lincoln)
"When a job still looked like a mere means of getting money rather than an opportunity for service, when the acquisition of money for financial independence looked more important than a right dependence upon God, we were still the victims of unreasonable fears. And these were fears which would make a serene and useful existence, at any financial level, quite impossible." -- Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 121

I think I am going to make up my mind to be happy today and try to bring what I can to my workplace to make it a better place. God will help me with this, if I ask Him.


dAAve said...

Ask your sponsee to send me a gratitude list every day for the next week or two. If she doesn't want to send it to me, she can just let you read it.

Imperfectly Healing said...

Thank you for reminding me to make up my mind to be happy. I am currently serving in Afghanistan and let me tell you- it's an easy thing to forget!

KarenR1213 said...

Thanks for the reminder that stressing about my job won't make it better. I'd like to work closer to home and my special needs son. But stressing about it won't help. Turning it over to my HP is what helps, and doing the next right thing.

Lou said...

Be grateful you didn't live next door to us in the years past.

Syd said...

I am glad that I live out in the country away from weird neighbors. Or at least, I can't hear them if they are weird and the police come.

Alcoholism Myths said...

i like the idea of matching calamity with sanity - keeping things moderated on an even keel is just the way to keep on going day by day.

Steve E said...

Someone told me to "practice being satisfied", and I try.

And it works!

Pammie said...

OH crap Mary. Maybe he'll stay on the run awhile!