Monday, March 19, 2007


The meeting topic last night was how we make the most of opportunities in the face of dealing with alcoholism. For me, I've had lots of opportunities in life. I was fortunate to grow up in a household where education was stressed. I had material things that made me happy in the moment, but I didn't have much emotional happiness. My opportunities have been primarily those of professional achievement, investments, and other material things. Those things seemed important before things came crashing down one day last August.

The crisis that brought things to a head is something that I'll discuss at some point, but just suffice to say that after many years of feeling empty inside, I finally could no longer continue on. So on that day, I finally let go and expressed what I truly felt about my marriage and the emotional emptiness. This time there was no equivocation. I had reached my limit, much as an alcoholic reaches a limit where to continue drinking is insane. I don't know what the events are that bring your mind to that point, but I was there and ready to call it quits.

I talked to my good friend D. who told me to get to an Al-Anon meeting. I went and through going to those meetings and working with my sponsor, I've been given the greatest opportunity of all--to make myself truly happy and to finally feel alive inside. I no longer hold back on things that I want to do. I'm involved in life and living for the first time in many years. The opportunity to take care of myself emotionally would likely never have come about if I hadn't gone to Al-Anon and recognized that the people there had experienced the same things that I had. Some were at the same place where I was, while others appeared happy and content with their lives.

The other opportunity that I've been given is to experience spirituality. I was never a religious person and really was apathetic about organized religion. Through Al-Anon, I've come to believe in a Higher Power and know that I can turn to my HP when things get really rough. It is something that I never thought would happen to me who is always so analytical. But the opportunity to feel spirtual is one that I have grasped onto like a drowning person does a life raft. I think that if we are willing to be open minded and give the program a chance, all kinds of opportunities that allow us to really live will come our way.

"If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through.

We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness.

We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.

We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.

No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others.

That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear.

We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows.

Self-seeking will slip away.

Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.

Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us.

We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us.

We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves."

From Alcoholics Anonymous, pg. 83-84


  1. What a wonderful post! Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us.

  2. Ah, Syd, the Promises! Yes, the Big Book provided me with hope that I, too, could live a happy, joyous, and free life -- and that these promises would all be fulfilled in time, with working the steps of AA. Even though I am in Al-Anon, it was suggested to me by my sponsor that the Big Book had some wonderful things in it, and that I needed to familiarize myself with it! I see you have done this, also. This was the 'hope' that I so desperately searched for! Thank you for listing them.

  3. Thanks for a beautiful post, Syd.

  4. I am grateful for the opportunity to have read your beautiful post today. Thank you for sharing.


  5. You kick ass dude.
    Thank you for sharing,you really have a great way of expressing your journey..thanks for YOU being true to YOU :) and I thank you for all the support you share with others , including me, out here in the blogsphere:)

  6. Syd,

    Your posts help me a great deal. I'm in my second experience with Alanon. I didn't "get it" the first time. I thought it was about the alcoholic. Now I know it's about me.

    Thank you.

    Keep posting!

  7. I'm so glad I came across your blog. That way I have something to read with my morning tea to help me remember to keep Al-Anon with me throughout my day. Thanks for opening up!

  8. I have been thinking over the spirituality thing today, thanks for that and good to read your other posts :-)


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