Slogans

The only Big Book some will ever see

I confess that I pull these topics off the top of my head most days. Sometimes, I am able to tie them to other topics I have shared on, usually, it is just random thoughts. This is another one of those random thoughts.

I heard, when I first came to AA that I needed to behave as I could be truly the only Big Book that someone would ever see. I’m still confused by this, especially since most people do not know that I am an alcoholic, let alone in recovery. Yes, close family and friends know, as does my medical team. Yet the broad public does not know and does not need to know.

So breaking down this phrase a little bit more, I take it as if I am supposed to behave as if God is my new Employer. I am to behave as if God is my director. I am to be helpful to others if I am able, and to pray for those that I am not able to help.

If I am requested, on those rare occasions that it happens, to help another alcoholic outside of the rooms, I am to give the information and to share my experience strength and hope with others, especially alcoholics.

I try, when working with strangers, to keep my alcoholism off the topic list, and yet to act with the best manners I can. This is a huge change from years ago. I was an entitled brat. The world owed me, or so I thought, and I was to be catered to.

Ironically, as the daughter of a hard-working man and woman, I was owed nothing. I had contributed nothing to society, and yet…

By working the steps, especially step 3, and changing my will and life, I don’t believe that anymore.

Today, I am just grateful to be alive.

That’s all I have for now, may God be with you in the fellowship of the Spirit.

First things first

This morning, this post is late. I prefer to write first thing in the morning while my coffee is brewing in the kitchen. My office is in the bedroom, and I usually write while having cigarettes at my desk. 

This morning, however, I overslept and my sister is on vacation. I let the dog in for his breakfast. The house was cold, 62* cold, and I had to shut all of the windows. Coffee didn’t sound good, so I made a cup of tea. I ended up calling my sister, something I never do before writing, and I also called my boss. I handled business and personal things this morning before I touched my sobriety.

In the back of my mind, the words First Things First rattled through my brain. I was impatient to get to my recovery work. I was impatient to get this essay written. I wanted to get my homework done and the essay edited and online. 

Let’s go back in time, early in sobriety, the slogans were just words on the wall, and on a page in the Big Book. I didn’t apply them to my life, and I certainly didn’t crack the book for awhile.

I thought that they were nice ideas, but again applying them to my life didn’t mean much to me. 

Finally, I read those words in italics on page 135. 

First Things First

Live and Let Live

Easy Does It”

I had no clue what they meant, so I asked a silly question.

I was told that “First things First” meant that I needed to prioritize. I had to figure out what my top priority was in my life, and arrange my life accordingly. I was told to put the answer on paper, and live my life to that principle.

Ugh. More homework. 

So, being a good little alcoholic, I put it off. That worked well, until I was asked ‘How’s your homework coming?’ I had no clue what they meant, and then they said, ‘First Things First?’ Oh crap, I’d been caught. So, I begrudgingly went home and actually did it.

I realized that God was first in my life. Sobriety came second, and family third. I also realized that other things crowd out God and Sobriety in my life quick, unless I am fast on my feet. I had to learn the word, “No” and mean it.

What does this have to do with this morning?

In my call to my beloved sister, we discussed an upcoming excursion. She had been invited to have a few beers with the girls. She doesn’t want to go have beer. So, she was going to tell them an answer that aligned with her beliefs. It will work. In my head, being a good little alcoholic, I thought, ‘Why not just say that beer is not your thing?’ or say that ‘I’m taking a medication that makes drinking beer not a smart idea.’ Both of those answers are the truth. However, she is going to stick to her guns and use her beliefs as a reason.

On thinking about it, I realize that my sister is not an alcoholic like me. I love her to bits. She doesn’t have to come up with strange answers to strange questions to protect her anonymity. So, back to First Things First. I needed to put my sister first this morning, and think of her needs before my own.

It also goes back to the four absolutes. Was my solution absolute honesty? Not really, I was coming up with an honest plausible versus the real truth. 

In first things first living, the truth is a double edged sword. I have so much work to do on it yet, sticking to not just my priorities, but to God’s that I fall short most of the time. I am a work in progress. I’ll keep working God’s program, and see what His plan is for me.

That’s all I have for today. As usual, if you have any questions, feel free to email me at justanotheralcoholic@yahoo.com