Tuesday, 5 July 2016
We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.How could I ever not regret the past? I spent years trying to shut the door on it, and look where it got me: a shaking, soulless excuse for a human being on day 5 in Brighton Center for Recovery. When I wasn’t in the Detox Lounge I’d be in my room staring at the floor chanting over and over “I’m going to die in here” like an affirmation of a soon to be dead man.
All I wanted to do was to shut the door on the disasters, the consequences, the arrests, the failures and the fears. The shame and guilt was so bad and I believed alcohol was the only way to relieve myself from these overwhelming feelings that kept chasing me day in and day out.
So when I went to my very first AA meeting ever, I had no idea someone was going to ask me to stand up in front of everyone and read The Promises. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. I have neither - I’m a prisoner in an insane asylum and I am going to die here. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. You’ve got to be nuts! Pour me another drink - oh wait, i’m in a rehab center. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. What is serenity? What are you talking about? No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. My hands are shaking so bad I can’t hold this laminated sheet any longer; oh dear I’m crying uncontrollably!
Then I felt the desperation. 100%. I was standing in front of 125 people just bawling - not one of these so called promises were even a bit true in my life and for the first time in my life I had to admit it. I just dropped the sheet and sat down. I don’t remember anything else from that meeting.
Today, at 2.5 years sober my voice catches a bit when I read The Promises at my home group Sobriety First in Royal Oak. I’m glad I cry a little bit inside sometimes when I reread The Promises as it reminds me of the 100% desperation I felt on that day - something that’s easy to forget when I go about with my day to day existence. The Promises have come true for me today. I passed the Brighton exit on the freeway the other day. I smiled and bowed my head in reverence to the place where I got so hopeless that I was finally able to pick up the key that was right in front of me all the time.
IF you really read this closely I will be amazed IF you do
not get just a little bit ' teary ' .. Thanks Jeff ..