Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Steaming through the week

I was able to go to Mass at the Cathedral yesterday at lunch.  This is a real bonus of my new job.  The Mass only lasts a half hour, so I still have time to grab something to eat and get back to work.

I hate to belabor a point, but I am doing all kinds of things I don't normally do this week.  I know some of you discretely might jot something down during a meeting.  I really don't have a problem with that, I don't think most people would.  I was talking about a meeting where two women, on opposite sides of the room had spiral bound 8.5 X 11" notebooks in spread out front of them, and they were furiously transcribing the meeting.  Pammie wrote about it yesterday, approaching it from a spiritual angle.

I will also tell you about something that happened to me when I was in my first six months of sobriety that probably changed my life.  There were all sorts of shenanigans going on at my group.  I was alarmed.  I honestly thought "Great, AA is going to fall apart just when I get here!"  A friend suggested that I take my Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions and actually read about the traditions.  I thought that was something for "later."  But I read them.  Then I read more.  And more.  And more.  There are wonderful books about AA's history and how the traditions were hammered out on the anvil of experience... something like that.  Bill Wilson had quite the way with words!

One of the most important things I learned was the meaning of the First Tradition.  The Common Welfare comes first.  That means that I don't say things like - "I don't care if my group told me not to do this, or that you don't like it - it is GOOD FOR ME!"  We learn to put the welfare of the group before our own personal welfare because our personal recovery depends on AA unity.

I highly recommend reading books like "Dr. Bob and the Good Oldtimers,"  "Language of the Heart,"  "Pass it on," Etc.  Books about AA and its history.  

Must get in the tub and out of here to work.  Today is my big meeting.  I am excited!  I keep marveling at the fact that I have this new job.  I tried for years to find a new job, and it never happened.  Then one day in October, my phone rang and here was this opportunity.   I see it as the answer to a long, long prayer.

I think I will stay sober today and hope you all do too.


Syd said...

I really like the traditions. I wish more people in Al-Anon understood them. They are what help me with my relationships with others and with the group.

Good luck at the big meeting. I am sure that you will do well!

Furtheron said...

Good thoughts - we had a discussion at my home group the other day about a group in relation to traditions - prompted by this years UK conference questions. However of 20+ people at the start of the meeting only 5 stayed for that discussion - and the phrase "preaching to the converted" sprang into my mind. I suppose I should also think "you can lead a horse to water..." etc.

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

I love those books, especially Dr Bob and the Good Old timers, I love the old letters and stories about how AA has been hammered and lived out in the experience and pains of a fellowship who have been dedicated to the purpose and stayed the course over time.

I love all of you who have so much more experience and I love that with a few shares there is a wealth of experience and love that brings truth, acceptance and lessons.

Your blog always helps me to see from a different perspective, and I really do love and appreciate your wisdom, experience and joy!

dAAve said...

Thanks for your little clairfication. This has provoked some thought and discussion amongst my peers.

Good luck today.

Annette said...

Thank you for clarifying MC. If I jot something down it is on the back of a receipt that I have dug out of the bottom of my purse because I am desperate to keep that this gem, "Boundaries are for me. Setting a boundary is not to put someone else in their place....its to keep my place safe and serene so that I can continue to grow and live." I have that stuffed in my wallet on the back of a kidding, that is how together I am at all times. lol

I hope your meeting went well.

Pammie said...

Well good grief, it never dawned on me that people would think we meant jotting down something in our books or a quick thought was wrong.
I'm so glad you are getting a chance to go to Mass by your new job. I know how important that is for you! have a new job Mary!!!