I came to write about enjoying life in sobriety, having fun. But I’m not really having any, and that’s a shame. I’m very stressed. My number one stress is my dog. She’s 14 and has, the vet says, liver failure. Taking her on vacation in June nearly did her in, but since then she’s been holding steady. I’m failing to enjoy this precious puppy because I fear the ultimate break with her, the one when she leaves me forever. That is a darn shame. An old dog is, for me, a wonderful dog. She’s so much easier than she was when she was younger. She’s so much more mine because more time has gone by. She’s happy and she seems fairly healthy for her age. She’s enjoying life and I’m so torn up over its end.
Work is also very stressful. We are very short staffed, and that makes everything much more difficult. My work partner, who I love working with and depend on heavily, turned 65 last month. She’s probably staying a bit longer, but every day feels like the possible end with that. And I could be enjoying her so much more. We’ve been together a really long time and I’m beyond blessed and lucky to have had this amazing relationship. But I’m torn up over its end.
I don’t know why my coping reserves feel so low right now. Nothing major is wrong in my life, and I do so appreciate that fact. I’m kind of floundering with how to have a real go at this problem, my attitude.
Looking at my alphabetical list of topics, after “enjoying life” comes the “exact nature of our wrongs.” After Step Three comes Step Four. Maybe some investigation will yield some clues and some clarity and path. It always has before.
How do you turn it over?
My standard answer and understanding is that I turn it over by working the steps. If I live and abide by them, continuing to do a better job with that as time goes by, I will be turning my will and my life over to a higher power. This higher power can be, for me, simply a better way of living. Contributing and not taking. Making people’s lives better because I’m here. Being a better wife, mother, worker, citizen. The way of my past, when I was drinking, was to take, sadden, and endanger people. I had potential and resources but I rendered myself incapable of even caring for myself by drinking.
I have many tools that AA has given me and taught me how to use. I can meet situations with gratitude and humility. I can ask for help. I can help others. My mind and body work today because I’m not poisoning them with alcohol. I have an infinite number of people who are walking this path with me and who will help me walk it when I participate in AA with them.
Drinking isn’t an issue for me today (though I always hold close the possibility that it is lurking there, waiting to kill me still). Today I’d like to eat fat and sugar, retire early, stay home most of the time and play with Sims. And smoke cigarettes.
Instead. I wrote a postcard to my state representative (his turn, I’m sure he’s thrilled). Took a walk for exercise. Ate broccoli because I should. Cared for my pets. Read a book. This week I’ll go to work, help with the congressional campaign, get ready to visit my daughter, see my son, pay bills and give some money to the fair district campaign in my state (my congressional district is shaped like John Lennon standing on his head eating an oatmeal cookie), attend my meeting, take the garbage out, answer the phone (cell phone only, not landline). I’ll turn it over, and we’ll all be better for that.
ATTENTION!! AA has no opinion on outside issues. I have plenty, and I express them here. I DO NOT speak for AA, only for myself. Please do not stay away from AA because of anything I say.
I have an archive here that reaches back into 2008 and the last time Hillary Clinton lost an election, that for the nomination of her party for the presidency. I looked up what I wrote at that time and it just wasn’t as anguished as I expected. I was plenty anguished. There are many, many reasons I’ve wanted Hillary to be president and lots of my time and some of my treasure has gone to the cause, over nine years old for me now. It’s important in many ways, but for my purpose here I’m a sober alcoholic who has endured a very big disappointment. The disappointment has aspects of unfairness and PLENTY of self-righteousness and also fear of the future and a disbelief that anyone could want that terrible, disgusting man in our view for any reason.
I’m “working” on the third step, and it tells me that people trying to impose their will on others results in ruin. It reminds me that my own will in the form of alcoholic drinking nearly brought about my own destruction. I don’t always know what’s right. My ego has been bruised because things didn’t go my way. I don’t want to become ugly in response to the wrongs I perceive. I’m still responsible to many people, for many things, and my mood and demeanor can affect people for good or for bad.
Eight years ago I came away ultimately grateful for the experience, and that’s the ideal I hold before myself now. I see lots of good that’s already resulted, and the bad has yet to materialize. I don’t want my reaction to be part of the bad. I don’t want to be greedy and demand more than my share of amazing historical events to live through.
So, this was one of the most disappointing things I can remember going through, because I’ve had and have a really good life. As a major disappointment that wrecked my mood in a major way for a solid week, alcohol did not enter the picture. I didn’t think of drinking or want to drink and as miraculous as the experience was of being a Hillary supporter, being a sober alcoholic is even more spectacular.