Coronavirus has instigated changes throughout most aspects of daily living, but the Twelve Steps of A.A. offer a design for living which is applicable in all circumstances. Each week we will be sharing staff reflections upon one of our recovery steps, as it relates to a corresponding principle. Last week, was Step One. This week, Joe F., Jacob B., and Joe L., share of Step Two.
“Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity”
When I arrived in detox and treatment four years ago, hope had long been abandoned. I was sure I was losing everything that I thought I cared about, but I was also sure that I could not live in this world sober – much less happy or content. The miracle happened for me not when I found a faith in God or the program of AA, but when I became convinced the men who were trying to help me had risen out of the same despair I was currently in. I came to believe that A.A. was working for them, and the things they told me were true.
It was from that point my faith in a Higher Power began to blossom. Beginning from there a working faith in God, Alcoholics Anonymous, and hope that I could live a happy useful life flourished. I have been through several trials since getting sober, and the solution has remained the same.
Trust God, clean house, help others.
I believe that the disease of Alcoholism and Addiction is a disease of isolation, so in these difficult times I have to put in more effort to connect with my fellow alcoholics. With technology, the only thing keeping me from getting in touch with someone else in recovery is my laziness. I try to remain vigilant in my prayer life, asking how I can be of service to my fellow man, and I have a sponsor who will not stop pushing me through the steps. I have hope and faith that some good will come of all this even though I am not able to see it at the moment.
During my drinking and using days I remember attending church with family members and looking around in the congregation confused but jealous at the same time. I was confused that there were people who truly believed in something greater than themselves, and jealous because I thought I would never be able to obtain that type of faith and hope.
Arriving at Discovery Place I was beaten up and willing to take any suggestions that were given. Never in my life did I believe that there was a power greater then myself, luckily for me the gift of desperation gave me an open mind. Around 10 days into my stay at Discovery Place it was suggested that I pray for a sign, something that would convince me to believe. Three days later I encountered an experience that drastically changed my belief system.
Throughout my sobriety, I have seen my belief system evolve over the years. I am a firm believer that what kept me sober at one point of my sobriety will not keep to sober today. I have to continue to enlarge my spiritual life. Good sponsorship has guided me through my recovery journey, I have relied on my sponsors through the years they keep directing me to God during good times and bad times. During these trying times of a global pandemic, it is safe to say that everyone’s faith is being tested to some degree. It has been my experience that HE will continue to provide if we do HIS work. In my own spiritual life, I have seen the most growth during uncomfortable trials.
After beginning to come to terms with the hopelessness and futility of my life the way I had been living it, I finally needed AND wanted a solution. It seems like only then, was I able to open my mind enough, to the idea that maybe, just maybe, the steps could work for me. Up until that point I had looked at the steps like a homework assignment. Something for my 12-step “therapy group,” not an actual solution to my addiction.
Luckily, when I found myself in this dark, powerless situation, I was surrounded by a group of men who, based on what they shared with me, seemed to drink and use as I had. And those men had all become sober, but also useful citizens. For years!
The magic happened for me when I started to come to believe a few simple ideas. 1) That I could not recover myself. 2) That these men were once as hopeless as I presently was. 3) If it could work for them, then, just maybe it could work for me. Hope crept into my life, and I surrendered to the process these men suggested.
Hope remains, to this day, a guiding principle in my life. I do my best every day to transmit that hope to new men, who come in the same doors I did.
Are you struggling with addiction recovery while in quarantine?
Everything may feel upside down, but recovery must continue. We’ve reached out to our alumni to encourage them and make suggestions, and you should benefit, too. Here’s how.
Are you unable to figure out Online Recovery Meetings?
It can be daunting trying to set up a camera, mic, or even just a computer. But you don’t have to. Here a way to join an online recovery meeting without hassle.
How is Discovery Place responding to COVID-19?
While the disease of alcoholism and the consequences of addiction continue to threaten millions of lives, we’ve taken guidance from the CDC and implemented measures to ensure the safety of our guests.
Have questions about our recovery programs?
You might be interested in Discovery Place’s own treatment alternatives, such as our 30 Day Residential Addiction Alternative Recovery Program or our Long Term Alternative Recovery Program in Burns, Tennessee. Call, let’s talk: 1-800-725-0922.