Friday, June 12, 2009

Five Months!

Yesterday I started going to meetings again after six weeks of spotty-to-non-existent attendance.  I managed to remain sober the whole time, continuously and contiguously, one day at a time.  But it was hard.  Harder than going to meetings and trying to make genuine connections with people even though I feel like a fake and an asshole the whole time.  Harder than trying to scrape along on my own.  Harder than dealing with the foibles and incongruities of real, flawed people who are also trying to figure out this life thing and do it without mind-altering chemicals.  Harder than it had to be, which we all know is my favorite flavor.  Oh, how very much I love and live making things harder than they have to be.  How I love how much it complicates my life and makes me tired and keeps me from facing the things I need to know and do.  I wish I knew how to quit you, making things harder than they have to be.  I have a sick, excited feeling in my stomach that means it probably involves working on steps and letting it be simple.  I'm going to give it a try.

So, I'm five months.  AA doesn't give out 5 months chips, you get nothing between 3 months and 6 months.  I made my own 4 month chip out of shrinky-dinks, because apparently the theme of my fourth month was, "an' I can DO IT ALL BY MYSELF!"  Yesterday night, in the middle of tornado warnings and massive thunderstorm, I watched a lady in my group get her 11-year chip.  Part of what she said when she went up to get it was, "and don't do it by yourself, you don't have to do it by yourself.  Make some friends.  Make some memories.  Make some connections."  After the meeting she gave me a 'five-month chip'--a two month and a three month glued together back to back.  I love my group and all the wonderful, batshit, amazing, bug-fucking-crazy, inspiring, annoying, loving, messed-up assholes in it.  Welcome me home, because I'm back, possibly for the first time, if that makes any sense.  And everybody get a helmet on, because I'm going to attempt to be myself.  I haven't done it in a long time, because I thought it was really unsafe.  It turns out it isn't any more unsafe than anything else, and it may hurt me just a little bit less than being whoever it is I think I'm supposed to be.  Relax and breathe into it, this may hurt you more than it hurts me.   

Saturday, June 06, 2009

fun thing about AA

Found a version of this on the AA Loners' site:

A man dies and goes to Heaven.  St. Peter says, "What denomination are you so we can guide you to the right area?" and the man says, "I guess I don't belong here, I never went to church."  St. Peter says, "We don't make mistakes, if you're here you belong.  Why don't you take a few days and explore, come back and let me know where you want to be, okay?"  And the man goes off to explore.

He hangs out with different denominations of Christians for a while, and likes them okay, but he just doesn't feel at home.  Then he tries out Islam for a while, and it's nice, but not for him.  Judaism draws him in for a bit, and again he likes the people and doesn't have any specific objections, but it's just not his cup of tea, so he moves on.  Eastern religions are great, and make him feel good like the others, but he's about to give up when he stumbles on this little backroom, kind of out of the way.  There's bunches of smokers crowded around the door, and everybody is laughing.  When he goes inside he smells fresh coffee and sees a room full of people talking, laughing, crying, hugging, praying and commiserating.  It feels just right after he mingles for a while, so he hurries back to St. Peter.

"I found them," he says, "I want to be with the people in that little backroom over by the gates.  What are they called?" he asks.  "We don't know," says St. Peter, "they won't tell us."