When I finally decided to get sober, I started with Belle and Tired of thinking About Drinking’s 100 Day challenge. I relied solely on her for the first 3 weeks. I then started clicking on the blog roll on her page, and found quite a few friendly, sober people to engage with. It was extremely helpful to read other people’s stories, so many I could relate to. It validated my thoughts and feelings, it made me feel “normal”
I also reached out to a friend I used to work with who has been sober for 18 years. He has become my sober pen pal, he has he gotten me through some really rough spots. He had gone to AA in the beginning of his sobriety, and suggested I try it. I had also read that many bloggers were also committed to the 12 steps, and were happily sober.
So, I figured if all of these people, who had maintained their sobriety had tried AA, I should to.
First, I had to get used to the idea. Emotionally and mentally it meant that I had to admit I really did have a problem with alcohol, and was potentially an alcoholic. I spent a lot of time perusing the AA meetings page, trying to see a time that would fit into my “schedule”. (Yeah, I don’t work, that was tough.) It was really about getting up my nerve to go. To do that, I needed to find a meeting that was close enough to my house so that I had no excuse not to go. I have been attending a Monday night meeting for a month.
The first night, it was all men, not a great start. (I thought I had read the schedule wrong)
The following week when I went a few women showed up, and two “observers”, again, not real comfortable. I wasn’t sure about this particular group. It was small, the attendance was inconsistent and there weren’t a lot of females. When I attend I feel like I am sitting outside a circle of people who have something that I want, but I can’t get in there to get it.
I went back to the AA meeting list, and found an all women’s meeting. It was on Thursday nights at 5:30, that worked for my schedule 🙂
My 90th day fell on a Thursday, so I decided to give the all women’s group a try. Maybe I could find a sponsor, talk to someone, figure out a better way to work the AA program. I am very interested in finding the serenity that the members of AA seem to have. I want to work the program, I hoped this meeting would be a better fit.
I pulled into the parking lot at the designated time, and there wasn’t a single car there. I waited a few minutes, I got out, wandered around the building, it was locked up tight. I got back in my car, and called the AA office. I asked the man who answered if the meeting had been moved or cancelled, he said no, just wait a few minutes and see if someone shows up. I waited, 15 minutes, no one came. I went home, horribly disappointed. Not only because I wanted my 90 day chip on my 90th day, but because I was looking for answers to questions, and needed help, and no one came.
Last night I went to the Monday night meeting. The topic of the night was, How did we end up in that room. In the month I had been attending, I hadn’t said a word. I am REALLY bad at public speaking, I always have been. I finally decided it was time to put myself out there, maybe if I gave a little, I would get closer to what I am seeking. I told my story,I called myself an alcoholic, I broke out in hives while speaking, but I did not cry. It was hard, but it felt good, I felt like they were interested, and that they cared.
I was the last speaker of the evening.
I received my 90 day chip. I felt like Matthew McConaughey accepting the Academy Award, I thanked who I look up to, my higher power, for getting me there.