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Welcome to Road to Recovery
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  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Topic for the Week 02/12/2018 09:22 AM

    Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person like to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows.  Therefore, it is not surprising that our drinking careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could drink like other people. The idea that somehow, someday we will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, More About Alcoholism, p. 30, with permission from AAWS.

      We go to a meeting and we hear people speak about there drinking, we hear that they have ended up in jail, had several DUI etc.  And we say that didn't happen to me.  Or they say I only had one DUI and the judge sentenced me to attend meetings.  So am I really a alcoholic?  At that time it is hard to believe, but those that eventually got more than on probably thought the same thing.  But again the disease got them again and again and the D.U.I got more and more.  Now I could say that for I never got a D.U.I. and I have always said that my Higher Power was watching over me.  Or I could say at the time the police were on a coffee break.  But I do not believe that statement.

    I always went to a meeting with a open mind.  I listened to the stories of destruction they present that turned their lives upside down.  I would think maybe that it might happen to me.  There came a day that I started drinking 24/7 just so I could get through the day.  One day I went and saw a doctor about something that I wasn't feeling good.  He took blood work and came back and said that my blood work didn't look good and that I should do something about it.  He talked to me about my drinking and for the first time I was honest with someone.  I told him how much I was drinking.  So it ended up with me going to the hospital for detox and then to a half-way house for recovery.  And doing some outside rehab.  I wish I could say that my sobriety started then but I can not, for I started up again.

    The problem was that the obsession for drinking was too much for me.  I went to a meeting and heard those stories again, and then all of a sudden I remember what that doctor told me.  It was then that I didn't want those gates of insanity or even death.  So on Jan. 12, 1997 I quit for good and have been sober ever since by the grace of my Higher Power, and remembering what that doctor told me.

  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic A Path To Faith 02/07/2018 07:53 AM

    Daily Reflections

    A PATH TO FAITH

    True humility and an open mind can lead us to faith, and every A.A. meeting is an assurance that God will restore us to sanity if we rightly relate ourselves to Him.

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 33

    My last drunk had landed me in the hospital, totally broken. It was then that I was able to see my past float in front of me. I realized that, through drinking, I had lived every nightmare I had ever had. My own self-will and obsession to drink had driven me into a dark pit of hallucinations, blackouts and despair. Finally beaten, I asked for God's help. His presence told me to believe. My obsession for alcohol was taken away and my paranoia has since been lifted. I am no longer afraid. I know my life is healthy and sane.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 46, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic A Glorious Release 02/05/2018 11:17 AM

    Daily Reflections

    A GLORIOUS RELEASE

    "The minute I stopped arguing, I could begin to see and feel. Right there, Step Two gently and very gradually began to infiltrate my life. I can't say upon what occasion or upon what day I came to believe in a Power greater than myself, but I certainly have that belief now. To acquire it, I had only to stop fighting and practice the rest of A.A.'s program as enthusiastically as I could. "

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 27

    After years of indulging in a "self-will run riot," Step Two became for me a glorious release from being all alone. Nothing is so painful or insurmountable in my journey now. Someone is always there to share life's burdens with me. Step Two became a reinforcement with God, and I now realize that my insanity and ego were curiously linked. To rid myself of the former, I must give up the latter to one with far broader shoulders than my own.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections p. 44, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Rescued By Surrendering 02/02/2018 08:56 AM

    Daily Reflections

    RESCUED BY SURRENDERING

    Characteristic of the so-called typical alcoholic is a narcissistic egocentric core, dominated by feelings of omnipotence, intent on maintaining at all costs its inner integrity. . . . Inwardly the alcoholic brooks no control from man or God. He, the alcoholic, is and must be the master of his destiny. He will fight to the end to preserve that position.

    A.A. COMES OF AGE, p. 311

    The great mystery is: "Why do some of us die alcoholic deaths, fighting to preserve the 'independence' of our ego, while others seem to sober up effortlessly in A.A.?" Help from a Higher Power, the gift of sobriety, came to me when an otherwise unexplained desire to stop drinking coincided with my willingness to accept the suggestions of the men and women of A.A. I had to surrender, for only by reaching out to God and my fellows could I be rescued.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 41, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Goal: Samity 02/01/2018 08:17 AM

    Daily Reflections

    GOAL: SANITY

    ". . . Step Two gently and very gradually began to infiltrate my life. I can't say upon what occasion or upon what day I came to believe in a Power greater than myself, but I certainly have that belief now."

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 27

    "Came to believe!" I gave lip service to my belief when I felt like it or when I thought it would look good. I didn't really trust God. I didn't believe He cared for me. I kept trying to change things I couldn't change. Gradually, in disgust, I began to turn it all over, saying: "You're so omnipotent, you take care of it." He did. I began to receive answers to my deepest problems, sometimes at the most unusual times: driving to work, eating lunch, or when I was sound asleep. I realized that I hadn't thought of those solutions -- a Power greater than myself had given them to me. I came to believe.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 40, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Our Common Welfare Comes First 01/31/2018 10:01 AM

    Daily Reflections

    OUR COMMON WELFARE COMES FIRST 

    The unity of Alcoholics Anonymous is the most cherished quality our Society has. . . . We stay whole, or A.A. dies. 

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 129 

    Our Traditions are key elements in the ego deflation process necessary to achieve and maintain sobriety in Alcoholics Anonymous. The First Tradition reminds me not to take credit, or authority, for my recovery. Placing our common welfare first reminds me not to become a healer in this program; I am still one of the patients. Self-effacing elders built the ward. Without it, I doubt I would be alive. Without the group, few alcoholics would recover. 

    The active role in renewed surrender of will enables me to step aside from the need to dominate, the desire for recognition, both of which played so great a part in my active alcoholism. Deferring my personal desires for the greater good of group growth contributes toward A.A. unity that is central to all recovery. It helps me to remember that the whole is greater than the sum of all its parts. 

    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 39, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Topic for the Week 01/29/2018 08:07 AM

    The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost the power of choice in drink. Our so-called will power becomes practically nonexistent. We are unable, at certain times, to bring into our consciousness with sufficient force the memory of the suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago. We are without defense against the first drink.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, p. 24, with permission from AAWS

    Topic:  What spiritual tool do you use from staying away from that first drink?
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Topic for the Week 01/29/2018 08:07 AM

    The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost the power of choice in drink. Our so-called will power becomes practically nonexistent. We are unable, at certain times, to bring into our consciousness with sufficient force the memory of the suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago. We are without defense against the first drink.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, p. 24, with permission from AAWS

    Topic:  What spiritual tool do you use from staying away from that first drink?
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic The Joy Of Sharing 01/29/2018 07:51 AM

    Daily Reflections

    THE JOY OF SHARING 

    Life will take on new meaning. To watch people recover, to see them help others, to watch loneliness vanish, to see a fellowship grow up about you, to have a host of friends -- this is an experience you must not miss. We know you will not want to miss it. Frequent contact with newcomers and with each other is the bright spot of our lives. 

    ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 89 

    To know that each newcomer with whom I share has the opportunity to experience the relief that I have found in this Fellowship fills me with joy and gratitude. I feel that all the things described in A.A. will come to pass for them, as they have for me, if they seize the opportunity and embrace the program fully. 


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Readings, p. 39, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic The Treasure Of The Past 01/28/2018 08:15 AM

    Daily Reflections

    THE TREASURE OF THE PAST 

    Showing others who suffer how we were given help is the very thing which makes life seem so worth while to us now. Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have -- the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. 

    ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 124 

    What a gift it is for me to realize that all those seemingly useless years were not wasted. The most degrading and humiliating experiences turn out to be the most powerful tools in helping others to recover. In knowing the depths of shame and despair, I can reach out with a loving and compassionate hand, and know that the grace of God is available to me. 


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 38, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Freedom From Guilt 01/27/2018 09:17 AM

    Daily Reflections

    FREEDOM FROM GUILT

    Where other people were concerned, we had to drop the word "blame" from our speech and thought.

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 47

    When I become willing to accept my own powerlessness, I begin to realize that blaming myself for all the trouble in my life can be an ego trip back into hopelessness. Asking for help and listening deeply to the messages inherent in the Steps and Traditions of the program make it possible to change those attitudes which delay my recovery. Before joining A.A., I had such a desire for approval from people in powerful positions that I was willing to sacrifice myself, and others, to gain a foothold in the world. I invariably came to grief. In the program I find true friends who love, understand, and care to help me learn the truth about myself. With the help of the Twelve Steps, I am able to build a better life, free of guilt and the need for self-justification.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 37, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Rigorous Honesty 01/26/2018 07:59 AM

    Daily Reflections

    RIGOROUS HONESTY


    Who wishes to be rigorously honest and tolerant? Who wants to confess his faults to another and make restitution for harm done? Who cares anything about a Higher Power, let alone meditation and prayer? Who wants to sacrifice time and energy in trying to carry A.A.'s message to the next sufferer? No, the average alcoholic, self-centered in the extreme, doesn't care for this prospect --- unless he has to do these things in order to stay alive himself.

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS p. 24

    I am an alcoholic. If I drink I will die. My, what power, energy, and emotion this simple statement generates in me! But it's really all I need to know for today. Am I willing to stay alive today? Am I willing to stay sober today? Am I willing to ask for help and am I willing to be a help to another suffering alcoholic today? Have I discovered the fatal nature of my situation? What must I do, today, to stay sober?


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 36, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic What We Need -- Each Other 01/25/2018 07:32 AM

    Daily Reflections

    WHAT WE NEED -- EACH OTHER

    . . . A.A. is really saying to every serious drinker, "You are an A.A. member if you say so . . . nobody can keep you out."

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 139

    For years, whenever I reflected on Tradition Three ("The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking"), I thought it valuable only to newcomers. It was their guarantee that no one could bar them from A.A. Today I feel enduring gratitude for the spiritual development the Tradition has brought me. I don't seek out people obviously different from myself. Tradition Three, concentrating on the one way I am similar to others, brought me to know and help every kind of alcoholic, just as they have helped me. Charlotte, the atheist, showed me higher standards of ethics and honor; Clay, of another race, taught me patience; Winslow, who is gay, led me by example into true compassion; Young Megan says that seeing me at meetings, sober thirty years, keeps her coming back. Tradition Three insured that we would get what we need -- each other.


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p.33 with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Getting Involved 01/24/2018 08:00 AM

    Daily Reflections

    GETTING INVOLVED 

    There is action and more action. "Faith without works is dead" . . . To be helpful is our only aim. 

    ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, pp. 88-89 

    I understand that service is a vital part of recovery but I often wonder, "What can I do?" Simply start with what I have today! I look around to see where there is a need. Are the ashtrays full? Do I have hands and feet to empty them? Suddenly I'm involved! The best speaker may make the worst coffee; the member who's best with newcomers may be unable to read; the one willing to clean up may make a mess of the bank account -- yet every one of these people and jobs is essential to an active group. The miracle of service is this: when I use what I have, I find there is more available to me than I realized before. 


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p.32, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Having Fun Yet? 01/23/2018 07:39 AM

    Daily Reflections

    HAVING FUN YET? 

    . . . we aren't a glum lot. If newcomers could see no joy or fun in our existence, they wouldn't want it. We absolutely insist on enjoying life. We try not to indulge in cynicism over the state of the nations, nor do we carry the world's troubles on our shoulders. 

    ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 132 

    When my own house is in order, I find the different parts of my life are more manageable. Stripped from the guilt and remorse that cloaked my drinking years, I am free to assume my proper role in the universe, but this condition requires maintenance. I should stop and ask myself, Am I having fun yet? If I find answering that question difficult or painful, perhaps I'm taking myself too seriously -- and finding it difficult to admit that I've strayed from my practice of working the program to keep my house in order. I think the pain I experience is one way my Higher Power has to get my attention, coaxing me to take stock of my performance. The slight time and effort it takes to work the program -- spot-check inventory, for example, or the making of amends, whatever is appropriate-are well worth the effort. 


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 31, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Let's Keep It Simple 01/22/2018 12:35 PM

    Daily Reflections

    "LET'S KEEP IT SIMPLE" 

    A few hours later I took my leave of Dr. Bob... The wonderful, old, broad smile was on his face as he said almost jokingly, "Remember, Bill, let's not louse this thing up. Let's keep it simple!'' I turned away, unable to say a word. That was the last time I ever saw him. 

    ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS COMES OF AGE, p. 214 

    After years of sobriety I occasionally ask myself "Can it be this simple?" Then, at meetings, I see former cynics and skeptics who have walked the A.A. path out of hell by packaging their lives, without alcohol, into twenty-four hour segments, during which they practice a few principles to the best of their individual abilities. And then I know again that, while it isn't always easy, if I keep it simple, it works. 

    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 30. with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Topic for the Week 01/22/2018 12:11 PM

    We know that while the alcoholic keeps away from drink, as he may do for months or years, he reacts much like other men. We are equally positive that once he takes any alcohol whatever into his system, something happens, both in the bodily and mental sense, which makes it virtually impossible for him to stop. The experience of any alcoholic will abundantly confirm this.

    These observations would be academic and pointless if our friend never took the first drink, thereby setting the terrible cycle in motion. Therefore, the main problem of the alcoholic centers in his mind, rather than is body.

    Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, There Is A Solution, pgs 22, 23, with permission from AAWS

    Topic:  There have been some members of A.A. that thought that after so many years of sobriety they feel that they can drink again.  So would you agree that the main problem of the alcoholic centers in his mind?
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Serving My Brother 01/21/2018 07:56 AM

    Daily Reflections

    SERVING MY BROTHER 

    The member talks to the newcomer not in a spirit of power but in a spirit of humility and weakness. 

    ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS COMES OF AGE p. 279 

    As the days pass in A.A., I ask God to guide my thoughts and the words that I speak. In this labor of continuous participation in the Fellowship, I have numerous opportunities to speak. So I frequently ask God to help me watch over my thoughts and my words, that they may be the true and proper reflections of our program; to focus my aspirations once again to seek His guidance; to help me be truly kind and loving, helpful and healing, yet always filled with humility, and free from any trace of arrogance. 

    Today I may very well have to deal with disagreeable attitudes or utterances -- the typical stock-in-trade attitude of the still-suffering alcoholic. If this should happen, I will take a moment to center myself in God, so that I will be able to respond from a perspective of composure, strength and sensibility. 


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 29, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Round-The-Clock Faith 01/19/2018 09:20 AM

    Daily Reflections

    ROUND-THE-CLOCK FAITH 

    Faith has to work twenty-four hours a day in and through us, or we perish. 

    ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, P. 16 

    The essence of my spirituality, and my sobriety, rests on a round-the-clock faith in a Higher Power. I need to remember and rely on the God of my understanding as I pursue all of my daily activities. How comforting for me is the concept that God works in and through people. As I pause in my day, do I recall specific concrete examples of God's presence? Am I amazed and uplifted by the number of times this power is evident? I am overwhelmed with gratitude for my God's presence in my life of recovery. Without this omnipotent force in my every activity, I would again fall into the depths of my disease -- and death. 


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p. 27, with permission from AAWS
  • JohnTBegin JohnTBe
  • Topic Would A Drink Help? 01/18/2018 08:50 AM

    Daily Reflections

    WOULD A DRINK HELP? 

    By going back in our own drinking histories, we could show that years before we realized it we were out of control, that our drinking even then was no mere habit, that it was indeed the beginning of a fatal progression. 

    TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 23 

    When I was still drinking, I couldn't respond to any of life's situations the way other, more healthy, people could. The smallest incident triggered a state of mind that believed I had to have a drink to numb my feelings. But the numbing did not improve the situation, so I sought further escape in the bottle. Today I must be aware of my alcoholism. I cannot afford to believe that I have gained control of my drinking -- or again I will think I have gained control of my life. Such a feeling of control is fatal to my recovery. 


    Alcoholics Anonymous, Daily Reflections, p.18, with permission from AAWS
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