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Tuesday … Avoiding Self Pity

tumblr_mr0j4uaWha1qa64aho1_500 connorjon

Courtesy: ConnorJon

For the last week we have been monitoring the weather very closely because of rules and regulations at the parish where the Tuesday Meeting meets. We’ve shopped for mats for wet shoes, and tonight we got a blessed BUMP in numbers. Me thinks my flyers are doing their thing well. I have to thank my elves the next time I see them for distribution.

So, it is snowing. The first big snow event of 2013 for Montreal has begun. Some say straight snow, the tv people say it will be a mixed bag, but the number 20 is being bandied about as in 20 cm of snow in total in a 48 hour snow event with rain and freezing pellets to come, so they say.

When I left it was cold, but not freezing cold, as you would expect before a snowfall. And that little temperature difference can make a difference between snow or rain. Instead of rail, I opted for the bus, since it drops me at the corner of the parish we meet in. I was carrying an armful of mats for the church, so I wanted the easiest transit.

When we came out, there was a light dusting of snow on the ground, and the kids at the Manoir Judo/karate school were tossing snowballs at each other.

Like I said, we doubled our attendance tonight. Which was the most folks we have hosted at the new location since our move.

The topic came from Living Sober: Avoiding Self Pity.

I have to say that my defects of character and my foibles are really presenting themselves to me over the past couple of weeks. I posted a rant, which I should have thought better of, but it did garner one response that kicked me in the ass…

Have I really forgotten what it was like to be a newbie???

I deleted said post, and along with that the comment, I should have kept it so I could have thanked the poster for the kick in the ass.

My pre-cake roller coaster is running swift and painfully through my life right now. I am not happy with my self review. I am not happy with where I am in my life, and as I was reminded tonight, I had the power to change it, and I sat on my hands waiting for someone or something to drop out of the sky and fulfill the desire I had for New York Style Sobriety.

There are old timers in my life. Men I can learn from. They all attend the Thursday Night Men’s meeting. They are my friends.

It is just what it is.And it’s the truth …

New York Came to Montreal, and when they left, so did their energy and power. Nobody I know reaches into the depths of study nor works as hard as some of our intrepid storytellers.

And for me it was all or nothing.

I could do New York, by skype and email and on the phone. I chose not to do that, because I did not want a long distance relationship with someone in another country.

In my head, I feel I am lacking in my program. I feel like I am going to meetings, and I drop counsel whenever possible, but does it matter? Do I make a difference? Do I matter? Doesn’t this wreak of “All about me?”

You can’t sit in all about me when you are working to serve other folks. Which is why I go to meetings and I talk, and I help with group responsibilities. This is not all about me, but my disease wants me to sit in this pity pot and say WHY ???

Another member would tell me “Why Not?”

Others would say … Get out of yourself.

Another suggests practicing Gratitude more often.

I am where I am, and as the Acceptance Statement says:

Nothing, Absolutely Nothing happens in God’s World by Mistake.”

I seem to have words for other people.

I just don’t seem to have them for myself.

I have the holy trinity … A roof, food in my fridge and a bed to sleep in.

For the first time in 12 years, “Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us,” has come to pass. It took twelve years for this promise to come to pass.

Taken to bare bones and simple thought … I haven’t had a drink in almost 12 years. Not that I even ponder a drink, but when that pity pot voice starts to talk, it is akin to taking a drink.

Poor me, Poor me, Pour me a drink …

Go to a meeting, I am sure there will be someone who is worse off than you and you can get out of yourself and help them.

I did that tonight. I rode the bus, with a friend. On the way out I met a lady friend on the bus from T.B. and that was nice.

It is snowing. My Ave Maria moment happened.

I am where I am, and I should be satisfied with that.

I could be sick. I could drink. And really, I could be dead as well.

My days are book-ended by pills. That keep me alive.

They are still working. Gratitude…

Plenty more to come, stay tuned …

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One response

  1. Self pity and I have had a long-standing relationship. One I was unaware of for most of my life pre-crash and burn.

    I had no idea how insidious self pit could be. In my experience, it often fools us by leaving us thinking that it mainly expresses itself by us saying, “Poor me”, which most of never actually say in those words.

    It instead, is far sneakier. It prompts us to make subtle comparisons with others, it tells us that we should get even with someone for something, it quietly prompts us to be envious, feeling that we are less-than because of some disadvantage we believe we have…. and dozens of other covert strategies to weave itself into our thinking and behaving.

    I was so rooted in self-pity when I showed up at the doors of AA, it was unbelievable.

    One thing I will say for sure about AA is that it is populated with many people who have overcome self pity. Not all, but many. And in AA, we are less prone to using shame as a tool to help other see and overcome their own self pity. Instead, we more often use the examples of our own lives and new perspectives that are not mired in self-pity. We use the verbal sharing of our weaknesses, awakenings, and victories, that a newcomer can hear on his own level and absorb at his own capability. We use repetition of our messages that then slowly sink in after being heard over and over again.

    And best of all, we use understanding. At least the people in my world did. They related to the self pity I was in by having been veterans of the same. They were me when they first walked. They thought and behaved similarly. And they overcame, then shared their experience, strength and hope with me. That’s a lot more effective than shaming people out of their self-pity. Which often serves only to grind people further into self-pity.

    That is one thing I will say for sure, AA, even as flawed as my experience has been, has been a place with a low content of self pity, and a high content of understanding and help for those of us who suffer in it.

    Ciao.

    Chaz

    November 29, 2013 at 2:17 am

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