Needing so much courage this morning. Just finished an online AA meeting at “In the Rooms” which is a great site for anyone wanting some support but not yet willing to walk into a meeting in real-life.
Last night was Friday night as you may know, and I was home alone as husband was out of town with middle daughter for soccer. The sound of the call from the wine bottle was alive and kicking. I put my headphones in and began listening to “The Bubble Hour” and did NOT stop listening to those amazing women all night long. While I listened, my fridge was cleaned, two pantries were reorganized, dishes were done, laundry sorted, washed, beds made, bathroom scrubbed, and entire house vacuumed but best of all I DID NOT DRINK. Shout out to Jean, author of unpickled and one of the hosts of the Bubble Hour for the idea to clean the house to stay sober when we are feeling triggered!!! Woke up this morning and momentarily wondered what the hell happened here last night but in a good way – not like after some of the “get togethers” I have hosted on a Friday night… I must have listened to 5 or 6 episodes and it was awesome. I felt like I was hanging out with some close girlfriends… sad, I know on some level, but whatever.
Listening to those ladies talk and talk began to crack a wall that I have built around an aversion to recovery meetings. I have gone down that road and while it worked (I achieved seven months and that included a trip to Europe – think Tuscany and France – and did not drink!!!) I was at best a reluctant participant mostly because I am shit scared – no make that terrified
of the stigma that goes along with being in a “program” and it is actually keeping me from getting help. A very close friend of mine, who was/is also my boss warned me about my employer finding out I attend recovery meetings as well. That scares me to death. BUT I cannot stay fucking stopped – that much I know. I know that if I go to meetings I will likely stay stopped but I don’t wanna. Insert feet kicking, whiny toddler at the candy counter here… I live in a fairly small town. I am a teacher. Our family is very active in this community and my bloody ego is terrified to be “outed” to have people talk about the fact that I am a lush. So in order to avoid this imagined pain, here is my excellent solution: stay a lush and lead a dark, small, depressed life. Hows that for problem solving?
But something began to change last night as I listened to Mrs. B on the Bubble Hour and other blog writers (writer of byebyebeer) That was a great episode by the way – you gotta listen if you haven’t already… And slowly I began to feel less like a fucked up freak who needs help. So I got up this morning and my first thought upon opening my eyes was: oh no not the AA shit again… But I joined in a online video meeting and as I listened to people share I could not believe what my hands were doing – it was as though they had a mind of their own – I texted my sponsor from a couple of years ago. And she texted me back, even though I saw on my phone that I did not bother to respond her last text YEARS before. Who wants to text with their former AA sponsor when they are steadily making their way through the Christmas season marinated in cheap red wine? You probably would have ignored her too – the only way I could think of handling the situation with integrity and decorum – don’t respond. That is how I roll when I am drinking. I know, super classy. But this morning S texted me back. And asked how I was doing. And those fucking hands again picked up my phone and before I could over-think and over-ride them, I told her I thought I might need to return to the rooms. And then nothing. And I thought good she doesn’t want to deal with me and my ego anymore – me either but hey, at least I tried. But then my phone buzzed and now I am committed to a noon meeting tomorrow and coffee afterwards. Immediately a sense of shame washed over me – what if someone sees you at the meeting, what a loser you are that you can’t get your shit together on your own, you are broken and damaged goods, this is a career limiting move… So I am telling that voice to shut the fuck up and I am calling on anyone who might be reading this or can relate to please please send me courage. Cause I really don’t wanna go…. But I really don’t wanna waste my life anymore either and you know I kinda missed that quiet, responsible, dependable woman who used to attend AA a few years ago. The one who was into running and health and yoga and had clear eyes and thought before she opened her mouth… She was kinda cool in her own fucked up way… And she was classy. I want to thank Mommabee (love her blog) who is chronicling her beginning experiences with AA too – her words have really helped me reconsider. Also soberlearning (another awesome blog) commented on a post I wrote and at first I thought no way am I doing the AA thing but I could not get her words out of my head. As I write this I cannot deny that there is a sense of dread going back to the rooms but there is something else too – I think its hope or relief or something anyway. But I really don’t wanna go….