In the Realm of King Alcohol
Sitting on a train back from Chesterfield to Plymouth – I remember that I promised to write an article for 'Share'. I have a feeling it will help me compose an email for the CEO I've just met, regarding developing a university project been working on for several years. The meeting went well, and it's time to get grateful.
Its not when things are tough in recovery I need to worry. I just put my head down, immerse myself in Step 11, do meetings every night, stick close to my sponsor and surf the resulting sumptuous serenity (on the board of humility) 'til things inevitably get better.
The problem is, things are good and in danger of getting even better. I have lovely lady in my life, playing in a Cuban jazz band from heaven, feel God is smiling warmly on me at the moment, and have goosebumps on goosebumps. (At this point I want to appeal to the newcomer who may feel that their life is over, living will be miserable with a drink (or 5). This is just an overhang of the alcoholic muddy mind. Your life has yet to begin!)
In the realm of king alcohol (with or without queen spliff) I would drink to dream bigger dreams. That's my innate mindset, I'm insatiably greedy and self-centred, prone to insane grandiose delusions, where my defects of character become morbidly inflamed.
I need to keep myself grounded – philosophically reflect on my Step 1 and how my life was before recovery: suicidal thoughts every night, yet terrified of dying, sensing my soul might be sucked into some dark abyss, night sweats, vomiting most mornings, the hangovers, loss of memory, painful, embarrassing recollections, the increasing isolation, guilt, dejection, occasional outbursts of violent desperate anger. And unable to stop drinking, the compulsive urge always beating down the voice of reason.
I love AA, its the ideal vehicle for my spiritual development; the opportunity to carry a message to the still-suffering confused alcoholic, it keeps me emotionally centred with keeping honest, humble and open with my best friend, my sponsor. (I use the word friend in the Greek sense – someone who cares about ones well being…wants the best.)
I love and am very grateful for my home group. It has a yearning, restlessness and thirst to improve the group and better fulfil Tradition 5. We 'bang the drum' of sponsorship. Big Book and Steps, initially because we feel its expected. Eventually we share these actions with conviction and gravity…because it works – it leads to a happy and contented sober life (often when everything else has failed.)
Sean M., Road to Recovery Group, Plymouth