I was very irritated when I woke up this morning. Yesterday Siyana told me she had gone through my Facebook messages and she was convinced I had been having some relationship with someone else. I wasn’t. The person she thought I was having this relationship was a friend of mine. She then basically said we couldn’t be together. I felt like well in that case what’s the point of me being in here. But the thing was, I wasn’t doing the program for me, I was doing it to get back together with my ex. And that was for the wrong reason. I’d have to sit down and consider why I’m here.

This morning for our group meeting, the questions on the board were: Is it becoming clear to you that recovery cannot be hurried? Have you made a choice to give yourself all the time you need here? Have you surrendered and decided to let go and let God?

I hadn’t totally surrendered my free will over to God, although that wouldn’t be a bad idea, my own free will having gotten me here.

The counsellor then asked us questions as we read out our answers, trying to draw more out of us. The format was the same as the previous counsellor. He made some good points and said some things that made me stop and think. “The future doesn’t exist,” he said, “all we have is the present, this day, and it’s up to us what we are doing in the present.”

In the restaurant today, C was in charge, who was much more laid back than L, and this was a relief. It’s bad enough being here and having to deal with your own thoughts and the place itself, then on top of that be continuously told to do this-do that for 5 hours a day, when you’re volunteering in the place anyway. It was quiet enough apart from the usual lunchtime rush. The good thing about being busy is that it stops you thinking. Action is the enemy of thought. But all action wasn’t the answer either. I did like time to think and reflect, sit and read and mull over things that were outside of me, ideas and things. It was just when my own self doubts and feelings of worthlessness came avalaunching in on top of me that I started to go crazy.

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That evening we had our AA meeting. The chair, like the last one, had an interesting story and spoke well. Jim, a middle-aged taxi driver from Dublin, said a lot that resonated with me. When he was drinking he said, he couldn’t have cared less about anybody. Not even his family who he loved. Strange what drinking does to a person’s mind. I’m the same. Everybody I love doesn’t matter when I’m drinking. And i used to struggle with this and for years my mother used to say, my drink was just a character problem I had, a moral weakness. I used to believe that and it just made me feel alot worse again. Today I don’t believe that. Drink is like an allergy for my brain. It is so powerful a chemical to me that it literally makes taking more of it the only thing that I want, a thing that I will put before anyone and anything. And that is terrible. I don’t want to drink but craftily my brain tricks me into thinking this time will be different, this time just enjoy a few sociable drinks and go home. But the reality is it never plays out that way. So I decide to stop drinking. But I can’t. I keep forgetting about the damage it has caused and again I find myself picking up that first drink. The battle is lost again. The problem for me was, I never had any defense against that first drink. I never went to AA. I tried counselling, and this did help for awhile. But inevitably I#d find myself drinking again. I never had a program.

But the positive thing was that I found myself liking these AA meetings in there, which were compulsory. This was what i needed. “I have a chance now,” I heard myself saying. I have a fighting chance to beat drink if I can keep coming here and listening, sharing. And in fairness it has worked for maybe millions of people. Why not me? And I remember thinking on the way out of the meeting, I can learn the tools here. I can beat this thing. It was the first time I had genuinely ever had these thoughts. Before, I could never not see myself drinking. I could never envisage stopping. Now I was starting to. One day at a time this can be done.


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