Posted in Sharing

When “Yet” Becomes “Now”

He told himself it was ok, to have a bit of fun
He could stop at any time, just now he was not done
He drank more than his friends at times, did things he would regret
Sometimes he thought of stopping, but he wasn’t quite there yet

His first exposure to the law was from a DUI
While driving home one evening, no doubt that he was high
He came upon a traffic check, was motioned to pull over
It ended in a room that night, an eight-by-eight enclosure

Was just bad luck that got him there, he tried to justify
The reason he was in this mess; misfortune his reply
Had he drove home another way this would not have occurred
Denying drinking was the cause, the only voice he heard

He lost his license for a year and had to do without
Rely on friends or call a cab, it made him want to shout
Mostly he would stay at home with nothing much to do
So, he turned to the bottle, have himself a drink or two

Before long two turned into three, consumption was increasing
Take uber to the liquor store, desire never ceasing
But once he got his license back, he’d quit for sure, he thought
When that day came sobriety was the last thing that he sought

When I must drive, I will not drink, he made himself a promise
It was not long before this vow was totally demolished
The same routine he had before was playing out again
He wrecked the car, was badly hurt, took months for him to mend

He knew he’d lost control, he felt he had to find a way
To moderate the way he drank, he’d heard about AA
Perhaps those folks could show him how to manage how he drank
Education was his need, an alcohol think tank

But when he went into the rooms, he got a big surprise
They said that he could never drink, there was no compromise
That’s not what he had bargained for, this place he’d soon forget
These folks were truly hard-core drunks, he was not that bad yet

As always does, things just got worse, the bottle was his master
Lost his job, lost his home, his life was a disaster
The ending of his story was played out in a motel
With empty bottles all around, the sound a lonely knell

Most of us had been like him, it’s easy to forget
How many times we told ourselves that “we’re not that bad yet”
Us lucky ones, fore it’s too late, had found the will somehow
To realize the time had come and YET had become NOW

Larry R.

Posted in Sharing

The Twelve Steps to a Slip

PERSONS who attain sobriety through the A.A. principles, do so only after a thoughtful application of the 12 Suggested Steps to recovery. They happily find themselves on a level plateau of sanity after ascending these steps, one after another, and they maintain their sobriety by a continuing application of these same steps.

Those unfortunates who lose their sobriety are said to be having a “slip”. I believe this is a misnomer, for it suggests only a momentary adversity that unexpectedly pounces on its unwary victim. A more apt term would be a “glissade,” for a slip is the result of a gradual process, beginning long before its logical termination, and progressing through a series of wrong steps, to a drink, and for us, a drunk.

A slip cannot be said to occur only when it culminates in a drink, for many of us, in our failure to apply the 12 Steps to our living, frequently have slips, which are none the less slips merely because we do not slip as far as a drink.

As one must ascend the 12 Steps gradually, I feel the “slip” is the result of unconsciously descending these Steps. And as descending steps is always accompanied with less effort than ascending them, the steps soon assume the behavior of an escalator.

As the “bottom” is reached it invariably results in taking that “one drink,” which leads, for us, only to all the remorse, terror and unhappiness that follows a binge.

These, then, are in my opinion the “12 Steps to a slip,” and are the direct result of failure to consciously apply to our lives the 12 Suggested Steps to recovery:

  1. We neglect 12th Step work.
  2. We omit contact with the Higher Power.
  3. We forget personal inventory.
  4. We assume grudges against others.
  5. We miss A.A. meetings, and avoid A.A. friends.
  6. We gradually lose humility.
  7. We fall into self pity.
  8. We worry about unalterables.
  9. Our thinkin’ really starts stinkin’.
  10. We become “cocky” and overconfident.
  11. We neglect to ask help from the Higher Power, and take “just one.”
  12. We become a “social drinker.” (Temporarily.)

R. H. Dunkirk, Indiana
Jan. 1949, Grapevine