Monday, February 8, 2010

The Aints don't really win

I'm not a football fan.  I've watched a few games but definitely prefer baseball and basketball. However, my attention was captured by the Superbowl this year because the Saints were playing.  Maybe it's the idea that a city could arise in some form from so much difficulty and pin their hopes on a football team.  Or maybe it was the fact that they were the underdog, often called the Aints.  I listened to the last quarter and smiled when I heard that those Aints were really winners, in a big way.

I don't think though in recovery that the Aints are going to win anything.  I can think of many situations where I was stuck in negative thinking and resistance. Just substitute ain't for "am not" in the following:

I am not going to do anything for you because you have done nothing for me.
I am not going to trust you because if I do, I'll be let down.
I am  not going to ask for what I want because I'll never get it anyway.
I am not going to go to a meeting today because I feel down.
I am not going to do service work because it takes too much time.
I am not going to work with others because who would want to hear what I have to say. 
And on and on and on....

I think that these are the Aints that drag me away from recovery and from any kind of spiritual presence in my life.  If I had been among the Aints in Al-Anon, I don't think that I would have progressed much but would have stayed stuck in my misery.  I am grateful for the willingness that I had.  I did what my sponsor asked me to do.  I latched on to the program.  I no longer seek to sabotage my life through negative thinking.

With my sponsees, I see those who are willing to do the work and those who have a case of the Aints.  I don't chase them.  They know where I am and how to get in touch.  I believe that God has a plan for them just as he does for me. 

If he is not interested in your solution, if he expects you to act only as a banker for his financial difficulties or a nurse....., you may have to drop him until he changes his mind. This he may do after he gets hurt some more.........

If he thinks he can do the job in some other way, or prefers some other spiritual approach, encourage him to follow his own conscience. We have no monopoly on God; we merely have an approach that worked with us.
  pg. 95, Alcoholics Anonymous


  1. I try not to be resistant any longer. The aints aint where its at for me any more. I still catch myself thinking negatively but I DO catch myself and don't act on it. A work in progress. Have a blessed day. Oh and I am happy for New Orleans as well, they needed something uplifting like the BIG WIN!

  2. I substituted the word "ain't" in your post where you wrote "I'm not going to".
    It works.
    Ain't we the lucky ones?!

  3. I've never heard it described as "ain'ts". Great post!

  4. You say "I no longer seek to sabotage my life through negative thinking."
    Right on. I too was hoping the Saints could bring the win home to New Orleans. I did not watch the game but I stayed on top of the score.

  5. Hi and thanks for the Mac advice.

    Your one is a standard MacBook, right?

    I heard the MacBook Air is the one without the DVD drive...

    What is a MacBook Pro? Just more expensive then?

    Also (totally separate query) what IS Al-anon? Is it for the families of drinkers, whereas Alcoholics Anonymous is for the drinkers themselves..? Or something like that..?

  6. Another reason I use the BB in my own recovery. I have found that because of Alanon, my words are more positive, my voice softer, my ears and eyes more engaged and my thoughts quieter. What a gift..ain't it. (sorry, couldn't help myself) :-D


  7. Wow. A powerful message. Even though they often seem to win by their built-in excuses, those aints can (and do) steal a life.

    Thank you.

    Blessings and aloha...

  8. I love your whole post, but especially the quote from the big book at the bottom. We have no monopoly on God. I think that is exactly what brought me into closer union with my God. It was an open door...I could walk through or not. The choice was mine.

  9. The resistance of the Aint's is brutal, and an easy place to get stuck - as the Ainter and the Aintee. I like your obvservations. You consider being an Aint, and also working with an Aint. Wise stuff.

  10. do, or do not there is no try, Monday night AA night as I write this and my performance development review tommorow so I got no aints neither.
    Negative thinking can creep up om you and then you have realised you are reverting back to old thinking again
    Thanks syd for a thoughtful post

  11. I watched the Super Bowl too..even though I don't know much about the game itself.I cheered on the Saints and happy for New Orleans to get some good party vibes back into town...(now about that housing problem!

    Ain'ts don't apply to my world anymore..honestly..they used to be my excuses to cover up my fears.
    UGH.Not anymore though :)

  12. Syd,
    Ain't that the truth? Groan. I couldn't help myself.

  13. I love how you paraphrased those "aints" in your writing. I bet you have never said the word "aint" for real in your life.

    Powerful post. Thank you.

  14. I had the Aints in my first round of sobriety. It didn't work.

  15. The one that drive me crazy is-
    There ain't nothing wrong with me, it's y'all that have the problem.

  16. I have listened to the aint's for many years now. When I first came into the fellowship, I worked very hard with anything and everything in order to please those around me and hear the kudos of praise. My sponsor wisely let me do this - - - until she would hear from others that I was doing 'everything' and there was no service available for others to perform.

    This was on top of the service that I was immediately dropped into at the state assembly level - which provided me with much needed self-esteem - and the assurance that I was not stupid, or anti-social, or lazy.

    As I say these things, I am reminded that I may be defending the 3 shortcomings listed in the previous paragraph, and need to look inside and see if anything still resides within my psyche in this regard.

    I also went through the anguish of NOT being in the same home group of my sponsor, which took me (and her) a while to accept - - - that I was not happy to be in the same group as she was, but needed the independence of finding my own home group. Now, I realize this is 'talking in circles' - - - - but once again - saying this - brings to mind the phrase that both fellowships use so generously (by way of criticizing and judging I believe) - - - she talks and writes the talk, but cannot walk the walk yet.

    With this remark overheard several times, I once again had to look inside myself, and find out just why it was necessary for others to SEE how hard I was working at every level and in every aspect, and my need to have others' appreciation verbalized and made known to all who would hear.

    All this did was remind me of my own personal low esteem, and that I did NOT need to accept what I perceived others' thought of me - - - my own perception and opinion of myself was most important.

    In short, I need to refocus - - - and to keep the focus on myself.

    With this all said, I bid you a beautiful and chilly morning, and wish God's graces on all you attempt.

  17. "We have no monopoly on God; we merely have an approach that worked with us."

    Love this!


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