Wednesday, November 18, 2009

You've Done Started Back Doing Them Things You Used To Do...

I need regular infusions of program wisdom, or I begin to backslide, in the direction of habits of thought, which I do not wish to revisit. I need meetings because otherwise, I bamboozle myself with justifications when trying to reason things out - I cannot always trust my own thinking. Give me an hour, I can rationalise anything.

Too much time and space between me and Al-Anon, in the form of missed meetings, or un-read literature, and my grasp on my serenity begins to diminish. It will be almost imperceptible at first, my downward movement, but were I to continue to miss meetings, I'd soon be zipping along at a speed to rival those poor souls in the ubiquitous reality! caught on tape! tv shows, who miss their footing at the crest of the mountain, and make the trip back down using the back of their head, and one elbow, instead of their skis.

Working 12-Step can feel like pushing a 57 Buick uphill while wearing rollerblades - that sucker is heavy, and what if we get to the top of this hill, only to find another, further, hill past that?

That's why we do it in pairs (sponsor/sponsee) and in groups - sufficient numbers with their shoulder to the back bumper, the side windows, the central pillar of that leviathan, and it will be gliding along like ball bearings on silk - but only as long as enough people are pushing. We can each take a rest now and then, but if we all take a rest at the same time, we will find ourselves moving in the opposite direction from the one in which we've aimed ourselves.

I have nights where I can almost convince myself that I'd rather lie on the couch with my little dog asleep on my chest, her exhalations tickling my neck, her soft snores making me smile, than haul myself into an upright position, get ready, and go to my Al-Anon meeting. Almost convince myself, but not quite. There is margin for error in that argument. I may not feel like putting my shoulder to the bumper of that thing, but who knows who will be at the meeting, and desperate for the one offhand comment of mine, through which my Higher Power and theirs, will speak?

I go for myself, and my serenity, and I go for the others at the table with me. I go because I gain so much, and now that my life has reached a place where it's a pleasant glide most of the time, I go because I hope to give back what was given to me.

Tonight I made the effort to sincerely compliment a member who grates on me a bit (reminds me too much of the aspects of myself that grate upon me) and it felt wonderful. As soon as I'd said it - and meant it, it was nothing but the absolute truth - my resentment dissipated, and I felt calm and serene.

I love Al-Anon.

1 comment:

  1. When I feel most down and least like going is when I really need to be at a meeting. Great post.