a rock and a hard place

i am wandering in a weird spiritual limbo right now. everything is crystal blurry.  it is the winter of my discontent. it is the winter of my gratitude. it is the winter of my frustration. it is the winter of my resignation. it is the winter of my fear.  it is the winter of my hope. it is the winter of my inspiration. it is the winter of my curiosity. it is the winter of my faith.

victims don’t stay sober.

i keep walking around in this surreal chain of watching people and thinking “if you keep doing that, you’re going to die.” and then i look at my life and i think, “if i don’t change, i’m just going to eventually die and not know it.” i see people who want people to fix everything for them and can’t figure out why the world just isn’t stepping up to the plate. and i look around and wonder why no one ever calls me. why people i thought were my friends really aren’t my friends at all. why they say one thing and do another. i look over at people and pity them because they can’t see how they are being taken care of. and i listen to myself complain about how i just can’t ever get anyone to listen to me about this or take care of that.

it’s bizarre.  i’ve been also stuck between this place of listening to a lot of old-timers in coffee club talk about the old days (these people have 32, 45, 53 years type of sobriety) when people were given a certain type of direction. when the program wasn’t as watered down. when people weren’t afraid to hurt people’s feelings a little. and i’ve been identifying with that a little. feeling like there’s a bunch of “kids” in coffee club who don’t know to act anymore. like they don’t know how to listen or sit down or come in on time or just respect the program. or how to be involved.  and then, i’m pissed off because i think my friend doesn’t really want to give me the time of day because i’m not working the kind of program she wants me to be working. because i’m not doing it the way she thinks it should be done. so, i become the friend of convenience. even while i judge others who are doing it “wrong,” too.

see? it’s a rock and a hard place. i think it’s why i’m so humbled this anniversary. instead of 10, it feels like _0 again. i just realize how blessed i am to be alive and sober and still around the rooms. still open to being taught and open to new experiences and open to what god has in store for me. i just know i have so, so much more to learn. i just don’t know anything and i hope that god is gentle with me and continues to help me as i struggle with my ego and wanting so desperately to be right.

the gentleman who spoke tonight said that when he came in, a woman told him his ‘ideas were like cement: well-mixed and firmly set.” i feel like that. i feel like they are like new cement these days. they can be changed easier than when i came in. they’re open for molding.  but i’m still hard-headed.  i still struggle not to be the one in charge, the one who has to be in first.

i feel like i’m on high heat, tumble dry these days. i just want the world to stop spinning and to have some peace. it’ll happen. i just need to get on the same page as god.

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4 thoughts on “a rock and a hard place

  1. I was in a women’s Big Book step study meeting the other night (yes, I am back in the program after 15 years of playing with a delusion that I could control and enjoy, but that’s another story) and a new-comer shared about some things. Being new, she was a bit mixed up about the step we were studying and another woman with 29 years of sobriety followed her share by essentially telling the new comer to shut up and listen if she has yet to do the step we’re discussing. This woman with so much sobriety has obviously forgotten the fragile state of the new comer. My heart went out to this poor woman with a mere 40 some odd days who was probably doing exactly what she thought she was supposed to be doing: showing up to a meeting and opening her mouth. Our state is soooo precarious when we are new. Our tendency to feel ostracized so firmly in place and our habit to run away so ready to dominate. I think that part of the reason why old-timers were so ready to use tough love back in the day was because the program’s origins were with the bottom of the barrel drunks. As some people’s bottoms rise (as it discusses in the stories in the newer editions of the book) I think that the “take what you need and leave the rest” principle also grows in direct proportion. If a person hasn’t had a drink today then their program is working. If you haven’t had a drink today then your program is working. I notice that as people stay sober longer and longer that their focus becomes on “emotional sobriety” and that’s as it should be but rue the day that we forget the true primary purpose which is very simply to “stay sober and help another”. If we’re doing that then there is no way that we’re doing it wrong…. IMHO, of course! 🙂

  2. Yeah, don’t get me wrong. I am really coming to understand that I don’t know anything. And in any given situation, I can take any position on anything. That if you’re really ready to get sober, nothing can keep you from it, for instance. Or, that some people need to get over themselves and realize that people just need to be where they’re at. I guess the part of me that is coming out right now at times is this part that is identifying with the idea that the program is “watered down.” That people are too afraid to tell people the truth and that it is leading to something that isn’t the program and that will also end up killing people. In the end, I don’t know. In the situation you describe, I’d have been irritated that the lady crosstalked. 🙂

    So, who fucking knows. I’m just observing some things outside of me and inside of me and just trying to let them pass through without judgment — which is terribly hard!!! Sounds like we should catch up.

  3. Well there is no question is that one problem is political correctness run amuck. You can’t say anything w/o some person or group getting offended. Unless of course you bash Catholics which is perfectly fine with the media. But the bigger problem is that the program is now full of people just there to get there 30 days and fulfill some court or union requirement so they can get back on the job or road and drinking. Now certainly some may stay, but the large majority of the “time keepers” are there just to satisfy some sort of ancillary reason in order to get out of trouble.

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