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Big Book 12 Steps ( money)

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Money! money! money! money! Now sober and working? Look at all the money I've got. I me mine! Hundreds laid out on the bed. Me and my money! This is great! Finally I am somebody..

Ok sure I hear at the meetings about the hole in the soul? The flawed character, defective even? Dysfunctional behavior yeah yeah..Lacking in responsibility, no coping skills. Not anymore no, not me. I've got money!

So now what? Lesson number 454 in living sober. Fear of financial insecurity will leaves us? When! Lesson number 453 was if I don't brush my teeth they rot and fall out and I got that. And lesson number 452 that led to lesson 453, I can't live on cookies and milk. AND lesson number 451 that started it all,  go to the Dr. when something is wrong with me. Lesson 450, does everybody get weird rashes on their face? No. It's as if I have no common sense, yet I know not to walk in front of a speeding bus? I just don't get it. There's got to be a line somewhere. Somewhere between inward and outward reality. Lesson number 449. I'm not everybody? And 448, slow it down to 24 hours at a time? Cripes! What ever happened to lesson number 2, keep it simple. That's freaken long gone. Now I'm hung up on lesson 449 and just moved on? I can handle it? Give it to me I'll fix it? I know what's best for everybody? But that never works. That was lesson 2 hundred something I think. I can't manage this mess!


I've got money but I don't know what to do with it? I can't manage it properly? Really? What am I a 2 year old? I'm 28 years old! A grown man! Damn this whole alcoholic thing.. Damn it to hell! I would do just about anything to be normal. Or what I think normal is. This is it then. Alcoholism. This is why I can't have nice things. It's the alcoholic curse, I can't blame the alcohol anymore, I stopped drinking it. I'm doomed to live in the ism!


I start out counting my money on the bed. Clean sheets and blankets, rent paid room picked up more or less, life is good. One hundred 2 hundred..twenty thirty. Then it happens like flipping a switch. 2 hundred and thirty isn't enough! I have money or I did have money, lots of money. 230.00 and change but now? Five minutes later? I'm broke? I don't have enough and the fear is here. right here in my face. I need more money to be happy again. More, where can I get more. Even the shiny pickup truck in the driveway that I was just telling myself was the coolest thing I ever had is now a monster! I don't even want it anymore! Make it go away! I can't afford the insurance or gas. I need to get another job yeah, that's it. I'll drop meetings and get a night job. I've been sober a while now. I don't need to go to a AA meeting every night. That Saturday night meeting is stupid and the Tuesday one, that's always weird. Yes. I don't need a midnight Agape patchouli oil hug on Wednesday that won't wash off. I can fix this. I'll just try harder. Better management. I feel stronger already..


I'm the lucky one for sure. I didn't drink again. If I had? Well, it's debatable whether I could or would even come back to sobriety or AA or whatever. Sure many believe a slip is not a big deal but for the hopeless? People like me? There are no dress rehearsals left. Times up. Fly or die. I was rescued in AA. AA wasn't graced with my presence and could no longer go along with the gag.. It took a while for me to understand this. I, me? I wasn't all that important. If I was to survive I would need to sit down and shut my mouth which I could do, but shutting my mind off? That would take some serious work. Apparently I was some kind of self destructive machine, a saboteur. I get a taste of something good and rather than savior it? I for no reason chew it up and spit it out. The selfishness. Ones good then two's better. Manic really. I feel something good and want more and take more until it's all gone. Then I am depressed. It's all gone and I also may have had something to do with it. I will wallow in my unaccountability. My denial.


I'm not sure when it happened really. This whole giving thing. This willingness to give. Maybe it was lesson 449 when I saw others had lives too. Not sure.Anyway at some point I became willing to become vulnerable, I was unafraid and didn't react impulsively to control the outcome of whatever was going on. I kind of just went with it whatever it was. Others plans or idea were not a threat to me. I became a participant. Or in AA terms? Just another actor on life's sober stage. I was actually happy when others needed support and I could provide it in some small way. I would help another suffering man like myself and there was no big thank you or ticket tape parade yet I felt great! All by myself I ask for help, ask my God for direction, end up participating in who knows what but it was free. No axes to grind no people to please just like they said when I first came around. It was almost as if I would rather help another. As if I was giving to them and it was as good as if I was getting it. I was giving to myself by giving to them? I was becoming equal.


So let me get this straight here. When I count my money or call it what it is right? Obsession? When I obsess over my money I become afraid and selfish. I don't have enough and my life falls into a void of loneliness, fear. Someone's going to steal my money. I don't have enough money. I feel threatened now, everyone has money and I don't, people won't accept me because I have no money, same as it ever was. Everyone is everything and I'm nothing. I rely on selfishness. I am resentful, angry, self pity dominates me. There is no one to like me so I can not like myself. No self esteem again, all gone. 


I don't want that. Especially now that I have seen there is another option for me. The willingness card. I want willingness, I want it everyday. I want to be free of my selfishness and fear. I really do.


So this morning I do what I have done many times over the many days sober. I am awake? I pray to be Spiritually awakened. First thing. I pray for direction that I don't do or say anything that's going to harm anyone. I don't want that nor do I want to feel the need to jockey for position and control for some temporary self esteem boost. I don't want to use people, arrange them to meet my needs in my head so I feel better about myself.


The money thing? It is there still. But without the fear it is just that, a money thing. We all need money, I get that. It's just that I myself needed a money manager just as I needed a food manager or alcohol or drugs manager. I needed a pretty powerful manager. I was apparently beyond human aid so my manager was my willingness to believe in a Higher Power. I was one way, afraid and surviving on selfishness. Seems just the opposite happens today with it. When I willing to give or share what I have no matter what it is really? Money, support, or just my ear? I have plenty. I have more than enough, I can't use it all fast enough it keeps filling itself back up.. I guess in a weird way it's the willingness. Willingness is my manager. When I am willing? I have everything I could possibly want or need to live my sober life. Everything.


Be good to yourself that others may benefit..












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