Gratitude List 08/06/2019: Convention

Gratitude List 08/06/2019

Today I am grateful to be on my way to a GA convention. 12 workshops on offer and over 100 members have signed up to come.

Today I am grateful to be looking forward to a day like this rather than the days I used to look forward to when I was in action.

Today I am grateful to be travelling with an open mind and a huge willingness to learn.

Today I am grateful for the opportunity to carry a message. The same message that has turned my life around. I pray I do it justice.

Today I am grateful for all the people who have worked tirelessly and selflessly in organising this event.

Today I am grateful for the venue and those who have agreed to let us use it. Without these agreements, there would be no events, no meetings, nowhere to go.

Today I am grateful to be doing service alongside some inspirational people. People who are friends for life.

Today I am grateful for the opportunity to make some new friends, as fellows from far and wide come together in unity.

Today I am grateful for my girlfriend who shows an amazing level of understanding when it comes to my recovery and the time it takes.

Today I am grateful for the seat awaiting for me.

Gratitude List 27/01/2019: The Jaywalker

Gratitude List 27/01/2019

Last night served up a reminder of one of the many stories that helped my recovery. Almost 2 years ago, I began to go through the Big Book. I don’t have a drinking problem (yet) but it made no difference at all that the book was initially written for the alcoholic. By simply substituting one word to another I could relate to the contents almost 100%. The words are magic to me and played a huge role in changing my life. Today I am grateful for this amazing text. Text that, despite there being 4 editions, has been left untouched (bar the experiences shared in the back) for 90 years. Today I would like to share the story of the Jaywalker. This story helped me understand that all addictions share huge similarities, and therefore share one solution.

“Our behavior is as absurd and incomprehensible with respect to the first drink as that of an individual with a passion, say, for jay-walking. He gets a thrill out of skipping in front of fast-moving vehicles. He enjoys himself for a few years in spite of friendly warnings. Up to this point you would label him as a foolish chap having queer ideas of fun. Luck then deserts him and he is slightly injured several times in succession. You would expect him, if he were normal, to cut it out. Presently he is hit again and this time has a fractured skull. Within a week after leaving the hospital a fast-moving trolley car breaks his arm. He tells you he has decided to stop jay-walking for good, but in a few weeks he breaks both legs.”

“On through the years this conduct continues, accompanied by his continual promises to be careful or to keep off the streets altogether. Finally, he can no longer work, his wife gets a divorce and he is held up to ridicule. He tries every known means to get the jaywalking idea out of his head. He shuts himself up in an asylum, hoping to mend his ways. But the day he comes out he races in front of a fire engine, which breaks his back. Such a man would be crazy, wouldn’t he?”

“You may think our illustration is too ridiculous. But is it? We, who have been through the wringer, have to admit if we substituted alcoholism or any addiction for jay-walking, the illustration would fit exactly. However intelligent we may have been in other respects, where alcohol has been involved, we have been strangely insane. It’s strong language but isn’t it true?”