Thank You to Alcoholics Anonymous

Today is the 12th anniversary of my sobriety. Thank you to Alcoholics Anonymous for helping me to save my life.

Being Sober

is about much more than not drinking
they said on that day,
but I didn’t listen.
They smiled at my arrogance and said,
Keep coming back,
So I did
because something inside me
knew it was the right thing to do,

and very slowly, bit by argumentative bit
I began to understand
that being sober is all about change,
how we think and live
and that putting down the drink
is only the beginning,

the start of learning to love ourselves,
of finding a new way to be which gives us hope,
guides us through new doors
and, if we are open and patient,
will lead us into a different life that is
beyond our wildest dreams.

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79 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. leamuse
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 09:48:28

    Christine, once again your courage inspires us all! Not only did you conquer the darkness, you continue to light the path for those who follow. xxx

    Reply

  2. Laurel's Reflections
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 09:56:54

    What a journey you have been on! You write so honestly, poignantly, and powerfully. Thank you x

    Reply

  3. tikarmavodicka
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 10:01:43

    Congratulations!! Christine,
    It’s an inspiring achievement 12 years! And how much you’ve acomplished and where your journey has taken you is a huge inspiration and something to feel very proud of. πŸ™‚
    I’m very glad to have had the chance to get to know you.
    To many more years “beyond your wildest dreams”
    (((Big Warm Hugs)))
    And lots of love
    Tikarma
    Xoxoxox

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 21, 2014 @ 10:05:43

      Oh thank you so very much Ti karma, for your warm comment. Its so much appreciated. And likewise I am so pleased I have had the opportunity to know you too; my gorgeous painting on its own little easel is right opposite me as I type! Thank you for your friendship.

      Lots of love and
      (((Big hugs)))
      Christine
      xxx

      Reply

  4. Jackie
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 10:02:35

    What a wonderful poem! You are an inspiration. Having overcome addiction myself I know that it’s a rough and bumpy road that leads to sobriety. Once there, staying there is a challenge. It gets easier as the years pass by but you must always remain mindful and aware. 12 years is awesome! Congratulations! OXβ™₯XO

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 21, 2014 @ 10:09:51

      Thank you so much Jackie! And yes you are right, it does become easier with time, but we cant allow the “easier” to fool us into complacency. Im so pleased you overcame addiction too.

      Ive just finished guzzling my second banana loaf and have four more bananas ripening now!. i love it, so thank you!!! πŸ˜„ Xx

      Reply

      • Jackie
        Jan 21, 2014 @ 10:13:24

        You have no idea how happy it makes me that you love the banana bread! It also makes me happy knowing that you have shared the recipe and others are enjoying it too. πŸ˜€ xx

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 21, 2014 @ 10:16:53

      ❀ Xx

      Reply

  5. triciabertram
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 11:29:04

    This is moving, beautiful, honest and heartwarming. You’ve been on such a journey my dear friend. Congratulations on a wonderful milestone, one that speaks of suffering, courage, and so much more. I’m so very proud of you my precious Christine.
    Hugs
    Tricia xxx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 21, 2014 @ 11:38:00

      Thank you Tricia from the depths of my heart. You are a true friend and great support in so many different areas of my life. You simply “get” me and I treasure this.

      Lots of love and hugs
      xxz

      Reply

  6. Mirada
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 12:45:35

    Hooray and BRAVO! I’m pleased, proud–for and with you. You’re phenomenal in so many ways–and I’m about to learn how putting down the drink is just the first step in “so much more”. We’ll have much to share…. Hs and Ss, a boat full xxxooo

    Reply

  7. Pete Armetta
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 12:46:33

    Who knew we’d be where we are today with all the experiences we’ve garnered- the good, bad and ugly. Challenging ourselves to yes love ourselves more and keep moving ahead does nothing but reap the greatest rewards in life. This is inspiring!

    Reply

  8. Cynthia Jobin
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 14:25:18

    I cannot add many more words to all of this, only come and be counted among those who admire, with my ditto, and more ditto, and continued courage, kiddo!

    Reply

  9. lscotthoughts
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 14:54:28

    Congratulations, Chris, for your inspiring strength and courage! Your poem is beautifully written and I’m so happy for you and proud of you for taking the difficult baby step which lead you to us! Sending you much love and a zillion hugs, too! β™₯ xoxo

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 22, 2014 @ 15:10:25

      Thanks so much Lauren! I too am so pleased this long journey led me toward all of you! Its strange to think way back then I had no idea where I was going and what a fabulous place to travel to, here to met so many great new friends!

      Lots of love and
      zillions of hugs back to you! ❀ Xx

      Reply

  10. donna55
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 17:28:25

    Chris, I know about the difference AA makes. My Dad’s tattered little black book was open to the daily reading on his nightstand the day he died. Congratulations on reclaiming your life! ❀

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 22, 2014 @ 15:14:25

      Hi Donna! Lovely to see you and thanks so much for dropping in to leave this warm comment. The 24 hour book of daily reflections means a lot to me too, as does The Big Book and all the other literature AA gave to me to help me get to where I am today. Its good to meet people such as yourself who “know” 😊 ❀

      Reply

  11. Jane Thorne
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 17:51:38

    Oh Chris, so very well done and yes, love of self is key. What a journey you are making, for I feel we never stop learning do we? Take a moment to pat yourself on your back my friend. Hugs from me with much love. Xxxx

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 22, 2014 @ 15:17:21

      Thanks so much Jane! Yes I have just given myself that so important pat, which a while ago I would have denied myself, thinking I hadnt one anything much worthy of such pat, and yet I would willingly give one to others. I wonder why loving ourslves is so hard? Lots of love my fiend xxx

      Reply

  12. Harry
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 19:17:49

    Well done Christine it must have been a long hard journey, and your brave telling the world.

    Reply

  13. bardessdmdenton
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 20:09:42

    This so honestly and clearly speaks of your journey to sobriety and renewal, Christine – sometimes the hardest choices are the ones that lead us to the magic of the unknown that is waiting to take us ‘beyond our wildest dreams’! Congratulations on your 12 year anniversary with all my love and lots of hugs! XO β™₯

    Reply

  14. journeyintopoetry
    Jan 22, 2014 @ 15:52:58

    Thank you David! Who would have thought we could have and would have achieved so much!

    Much love

    Christine

    xxx

    Reply

  15. Jonathan Caswell
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 03:07:03

    Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:
    THANK YOU INDEED…TO A.A. !!!!!!!!

    Reply

  16. Thomas Milner
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 14:24:42

    Courage and well done, Chis x

    Reply

  17. Peter Wells aka Countingducks
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 15:31:58

    The more I learn about you, the more I admire your courage. Over coming an addiction is one of the hardest challenges we can face, and you did it. You should pat yourself on the back for it every day

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 23, 2014 @ 17:55:46

      Thank you Peter. Your comment is so affirming and actually helps greatly in the ongoing journey of my recovery. I feel my recovery becoming stronger every day. As a very dear friend of mine in AA says, “in recovery there are no days off, no half days and no tea breaks”!! This is true. We are ever vigilant, always remembeing that one drink is too many, twenty arent enough. Thank you for your support. 😊

      Reply

  18. Libby
    Jan 24, 2014 @ 12:36:37

    Well done Christine. You are so brave, sharing your journey.

    Reply

  19. Francina
    Jan 24, 2014 @ 19:48:47

    From the first day we met in Bloggersville. I admire your courage and your honesty, dear Christine. Not only in the way how you deal with life but also how you write. I’m so proud of you , so my heartfelt congratulation to you!
    lots of love and hugs from across the creek! xoxo

    Reply

  20. harulawordsthatserve
    Jan 25, 2014 @ 17:33:08

    Sincere congratulations Christine my friend. I feel a little teary actually, reading this. You are so brave and so wise and so willing to listen…and that’s when life dolls out the blessings, when we listen to that voice inside that knows. With much love and great admiration, Harula xxxxxx

    Reply

  21. harulawordsthatserve
    Jan 25, 2014 @ 18:29:36

    πŸ™‚ xxx

    Reply

  22. PookyH
    Jan 25, 2014 @ 21:56:54

    Twelve years…. wow… well done!

    I’m fascinated to hear more about this (no doubt turbulent) journey you have been on.

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 26, 2014 @ 09:41:50

      Thanks Pooky. Turbulent at times yes, but wonderful too and very rewarding. The 12 step program of AA is something anyone could benefit from. And the program isnt something we do once and that’s it; it’s a way of life and is now well integrated into mine. Xx

      Reply

      • PookyH
        Jan 31, 2014 @ 22:38:52

        I didn’t realise that – I really know nothing about it. I must look it up, it sounds really interesting. Is it based on religion?

    • journeyintopoetry
      Feb 01, 2014 @ 12:15:11

      No its not based on religion, the founder members of AA knew this would drive alcoholics at a very stubborn point in their lives away. So its a spiritual based program but absolutely non-religious. having said that the program was helped
      along its way in development by looking at and sort of emulating the tenets of the Oxford Groups which were christian based. One of the great influences and people who helped AA get off the ground was Carl Jung. He tried to help many people with alcohol problems to no avail, but he worked with the two founder members of AA, Bill Wilson and Dr. bob Smith (both alcoholics themselves,, looking for a solution to the problem). If you oogle the names of Bill Wilson and Dr Bob ou will be guided to the beginnings of AA in Akron, Ohio. AA was founded in 1935 and has saved tens of thousands of lives.

      Reply

      • PookyH
        Feb 01, 2014 @ 20:37:35

        It sounds fascinating. I will endeavour to learn more. I’m so glad it’s been such a positive experience for you. It’s hard for me to imagine you ever facing those demons. It seems so removed from the life you’re living now. I guess it goes to show that addiction can affect anybody.

      • journeyintopoetry
        Feb 01, 2014 @ 20:41:00

        Yes Pooky, it certainly can affect anyone. And I have met and befriended lots of lovely people through AA. Xx

  23. greenlightlady
    Jan 26, 2014 @ 22:12:45

    Congratulations on your 12th anniversary, Christine. Your poem is a powerful testimony of hope and freedom.

    Blessings ~ Wendy

    Reply

  24. Thomas Davis
    Jan 26, 2014 @ 23:12:23

    Traveling difficult roads is not ever a simple process, Christine. Both alcohol and physical problems have their challenges that seem like mountains at time, but the point is, if you find enough humanity inside yourself to say to yourself that you’re okay (a thing that has been a challenge to me the last few months), then you can find life in the small things that visit your day. Congratulations. You have been on a long road and touched a lot of people in good ways.

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 27, 2014 @ 15:16:33

      Thank you very much Tom, for this warm comment

      “then you can find life in the small things” is what I will take away with me from what you have said; this really touched me in a deep place, thank you.

      Reply

  25. kathryningrid
    Jan 28, 2014 @ 06:17:03

    I am so proud of, impressed by, and thrilled for you. Congratulations, Christine, and may your journey continue ever on an upward, uplifting trajectory! Knowing that you are able to conquer such a challenge daily tells me that you *will* not only persevere but find beauty and joy along the way. I am blessed and honored to be able to follow you on your journeys.
    xoxo
    K

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Jan 28, 2014 @ 12:05:30

      Thank you so much Kathryn for this lovely supportive comment. There has been much joy on the way and many challenges too.The12 step program of AA has undoubtedly helped me in the acceptance/management process connected with MS. I am so pleased our paths have crossed right here and now! Xx

      Reply

  26. ME and the Boss
    Feb 03, 2014 @ 21:39:54

    Congrats on the twelve…may God bless you with many more…moved my blog to a new address and added one for poetry…new year…hopefully a new routine that won’t keep me too confused…http://michaelerb.wordpress.com/ (Big Book)
    http://meandtheboss.com/ and http://meandthebosspoetry.wordpress.com/

    Love, hugs and blessings…ME and the Boss

    Reply

  27. beckarooney
    Feb 06, 2014 @ 20:28:27

    Fantastic news Christine, I’m sure you’ll be celebrating another 12 years soon πŸ˜€ a real, honest and touching write, thanks so much for sharing this xx hugs xx

    Reply

  28. Betty Hayes Albright
    Feb 13, 2014 @ 04:41:56

    Christine, congratulations on 12 years! I admire you so much in your journey, and all you have been through. Your strength and determination inspire all of us, with whatever we’re facing. We CAN change, there IS hope, and a whole new life opens up, as you have shown. Thank you for sharing it all with us.
    Hugs,
    Betty

    Reply

    • journeyintopoetry
      Feb 13, 2014 @ 14:00:52

      Thank you very much Betty. It was a long and difficult haul to begin with but well worth the hard work. I became a different person and the program that we follow in AA has stood me in very good stead for learning how to accept and manage my MS.

      Hugs to you too xx

      Reply

  29. MΓ©lanie
    Feb 14, 2014 @ 17:27:14

    impressive and emotional… bravo and congrats! admiration and respect, Christine! friendly thoughts from Toulouse, France! my very best, MΓ©lanie

    Reply

  30. SuzyHazelwood
    Feb 21, 2014 @ 03:44:33

    Changes like that are a very big thing to accomplish, so that’s great to hear you have been helped to make that change of thinking – well done!!! You are a strong woman Christine – even if you don’t feel like one – you definitely are one! πŸ˜€

    I’ve been very lucky to not ever have any addictions in my life, so I can’t say I really know what it feels like to be free of something that has a big hold over you. Must be like coming out of a room into the light! My Dad was mildly addicted to alcohol, and he was very annoying with his drunkenness at times, caused a lot of problems between us right from an early age. He never was entirely free of it, but as he got older he found he couldn’t drink so much, and I think that frightened him. The less he drank the more I liked him, he was such a good man at heart, troubled by the world and some of the people he had to work with – drink was his escape, and yet, it didn’t really do that for him.

    That’s the strange thing about addictions, I often feel they are almost the same as self harming, because they promise release when in actual fact they just cause more pain. But it must be hard to get your head round that and see what it is, and then there’s the physical addiction too especially with drink or drugs. Must feel like drowning. 😦

    It’s good to hear a positive story on this. I’m sure every time someone tells their story of how they are now free, for as many that might look the other way and not want to know, I’m sure there will always be some that it will plant a seed in their mind. Maybe not this year, but possibly next year someone who read your post here will probably remember what they read and take some positive steps one day. That’s the lovely thing about blogs, you can share anything you want, all round the world! πŸ˜€

    Reply

  31. journeyintopoetry
    Feb 22, 2014 @ 10:59:45

    Thanks very much Suzy. What you say about it being our escape and yet it not being an escape at all is very true. You have hit the nail on the head here. We are, in fact, imprisoning ourselves even more but often cant see it till its foo late. And yes, self harming is a very similar process; all these different forms of addiction follow the same path really. I am just so grateful I reached a rock bottom that was enough to enable me to seek help and turn it all around. I now have what I like to call a healthy fear of alcohol.

    And yes, it does feel like drowning, “not waving but drowning” as the poem says. Cant remember who its by now but those lines are very powerful.
    Xx

    Reply

  32. Through My Eyes
    Mar 22, 2014 @ 13:17:25

    Very inspiring Christine. AA is certainly a journey to self-discovery, change and hope. Sending you hugs xoxoxoxoxo

    Reply

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