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Jaywalker …

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Courtesy: Shinybrat

The change up continues. Rain is falling over the city. But I’d rather walk in the snow rather than the rain. There is enough rain to warrant carrying an umbrella but for the most part, a toque is enough to keep my head dry, I find carrying a large umbrella cumbersome. UGH !!!

I introduce you to a new meeting tonight. It is a beginners meeting here in the city, that times against Tuesday Beginners at 7 p.m. We start at 6:30. The hall is much smaller – kind of like sitting around a large kitchen table. There were a number of familiar faces from other meetings, and a collection of new faces I’ve never seen before.

It is a discussion meeting. The chair decided to read from the Big Book for our topic tonight. pg. 37-38 BB …

… Our behavior is as absurd and incomprehensible with respect to the first drink as that of an individual with a passion, say, for jaywalking. He gets a thrill out of skipping in front of fast-moving vehicles…

Suffice to say, from the reading our man cannot keep himself from repeating the same behavior and ends up in very painful circumstances. And if we place our alcoholism in place of the jaywalking, a career in drinking is the same in many cases. Insanity ensues and continues from a drink to many, and leads to institutions, jails and quite possibly death.

The passage was read twice. The first visual that passed before my eyes was of a time, coming to the end of my first attempt at sobriety. I was four years in. I was going to meetings. I don’t remember if I was even reading the book at this point. I was merely existing. I was on the bubble.

Several key people in my life at the four year mark had gone out around the same time as I did. Prior to this event, there was a young man who was stuck in the revolving door of the drink. He took enough chips to paper his bathroom.

I guess I was a bit cocky. A hindsight observation. I’d see him do this over and over again. I truly did not, at that time, have a healthy respect for the disease of alcoholism. Hindsight is 20/20.

Watching someone battle the bottle was lost on me, then in my own silent way, made my exit from the meetings, and also from the state I was living in, in opt for greener pastures halfway across the country in the middle of nowhere.

I landed in a no-win scenario. There was no way out. It took someone from the outside at the end of this trip to save me from death.

They say we plan our slips. That they are premeditated. But what happened to me was well out of my control. They also say that if you slip, however number of times you slip, they progressively get worse, and some end up in death.

I’ve learned in coming back a second time, that I now respect my addictions. I am not stupid to think that I’ve got this licked. The farther you get from your last drink the less you remember. It was good to remember why I go to meetings even today, because I know what will happen if I go out again. I may never make it back.

While you are in a meeting, your alcoholism is out in the parking lot doing push ups waiting for you …

Lots of members inside of a year. Many of them struggle with putting down the drink, and changing the tape in their heads. After we put down the drink, the tapes in our head need to be changed, rewired, and for some erased completely in opt for new tapes meetings provide for them.

If for one minute or one hour, I think that a drink would solve my problems, I am lost. Which is why we read the book over and over. To remind us of what is waiting for us out in the parking lot.

It was nice to ride the train out and back. I don’t get to ride the train very often living where I do. It was a good meeting. I saw many friends who remind me to be grateful for what I have today.

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