What really is the 13th Step? The 13th Stepper. Am I a 13 Stepper?
I love you! I love you too! I love sobriety, me too! I never told anyone I love them before. Me neither! Why ask why? Look at us? When we both thought there were no more doors to open? Well.. Here we are in the doorway of enlightenment!! We have been rescued in AA and we are grateful. This continued for a lifetime or more like the month of August.
We're both much too self centered to see ourselves at this point anyway or take suggestion, neither of us have the ability to trust anyone who seems to know anything we or I don't. Why risk our new found instant gratification, our newfound self worth? We "yes" everyone in a humble and honest fashion and they seem to leave us alone.. We're here in AA to live free, be happy! We've had enough bad, we don't go there no matter what. We couldn't listen to suggestion if we wanted too. We're addicted to each other, we're addicted to ourselves. One night together with a candle and true confessions? we're soul mates.
Anyone who has had to compete with the untreated AA's new found love will agree. The new man, me? who on Monday has found himself completely painted into a corner and is willing with tears of hopeless defeat in his eyes to accept the AA suggestions. Oh yes! I tell my new Sponsor, I am willing to do anything, ANYTHING! Tuesday? I find and arrange the attention of ((Susie)) the gal from my meeting and all pain and suffering from even a day ago is gone for the evening. Boy meets girl on AA campus. It does have a kind of innocent feel about it right? Normalcy? The world needs love? I can feel it yet cannot actually say the L word. Lots of room under the radar for people to come and go unchallenged as they seek help for their alcohol ism or well, alcohol was um, right? I did stop drinking so I got that whole membership requirement thing going on...My troubles are behind me with her in front of me.. Actually they left the moment she arrived. I poured myself a glass of Susie, the self centered fear is gone for now. She is my courage, my strength. I think hey! This is AA! AA works if you work it! And another sticker is added to the truck.
I come to AA, my emotional needs are met, I have come from the void of nothingness to top billing in a matter of months. She's Gods will for me, my benefit of sobriety. Even Joe the chain smoking oldtimer ignores me and I get it! This means he likes me, I respond well to mixed messages, I like Joe and really don't know why. I show up early and help him set up the hall of shame sometimes. I speak everywhere almost every night and seemingly very wise little old ladies drop their knitting and line up to hug me. They look me right in the eye and thank me for my honesty! I am welcomed into my AA family with their new faces, my fresh script, new material to share. I am completely unaccountable but they don't care, everyone is much too self-centered to care, they accept me and my script reads, On the island of the blind the one eyed man is king. King me, I am here. They all remind me of my mother, my mother loved me unconditionally. Nomatter how ragged and stupid, I was handsome and smart in her eyes. I smiled when I entered the AA hall.
Cruel and abusive. Had I known I would have many years of growth ahead? I probably would never have sobered up. In this respect self centered fear was good I suppose. I could never really get a clear picture of my surroundings without the big selfie in the middle of every thought. Me me me, look at me. I'm here too! What's in it for me? I don't share without motive nor do I play well with others until I can gain control of them, I cannot blend. I am selfish to the extreme. Actually I am whatever they call what it is that comes after extreme selfishness. Paranoid? Yeah, paranoid fits. I am so afraid of losing what I think I have or need, I will do anything to control it. Obsession, sick and distorted obsession. You will steal my emotional security. I will trust you and you will betray me. I am afraid you will leave me? Of course I am! Hell, I want to leave me just as much as I believe you do.
I cannot see how you are my everything. How I worship you for my self esteem. I hate myself for who I am and how I think, what I think, so anyone is better than me that I cannot control especially. I am everyday fulfilling the prophecy from my demented father, I am nothing, I'll never be anything, I am a failure to society. I can't keep up with the overwhelming self abuse so I settle for believing everyone is everything and I'm not. I give up. I am so full of fear I am blind. I tell myself you're just waiting to make your move and poof, you're gone. I am abandoned again, alone, you are planning to escape. Your parents are against me, odd numbers on the phone bill, you talked to your old college girlfriend? When? Who? You told the neighbor why I was yelling? I accused you of wanting the guy from the corner store who you shared a laugh with? How could you tell anyone, you betrayed me!
I'm so afraid you'll leave me I am constantly looking for a back door myself. I throw a fit and accuse you of cheating on me so you can somehow in the middle of this massive emotional upheaval prove your love for me. You cry, you admit you love me more than anyone, ever! I am everything to you! Actually, I have cheated on you and am always looking for someone to steal some emotional security from. I am again unaccountable, entitled, I want you to pay for how I feel about myself. I am sick and suffering, sober. I am untreated alcoholism. I am a danger to myself and others in AA. It's not going to be long until I drink again. I can't live with myself and I can't live with others. My moral convictions are for you and others to follow, me? I do what I want and blame you, your inability to meet my demands, for my unacceptable behavior. If the rest of the world would only behave then I'd be happy and not so angry all the time. Yeah, that's it. You need to behave, you need to understand that I know what's best for you. My constant fear and tension leads to cruel and abusive treatment as the expression of my love for you. I yell at you because I love you! Or, I'm afraid you'll mess with my arrangements. Shatter my security I have used you to create for myself. No! You stay just like I put you. How could I know it always comes back to me. I couldn't.
I will blame you. Everything is your fault, you just don't listen, I transfer everything on to you.What is wrong with me is now what is wrong with you. I fix you and I fix myself. You don't go to enough meetings, you don't work the Steps. How could you when I control what you say to your sponsor? Oh yeah, lets not forget that one eh? Don't tell your sponsor anything about me or us. Don't let anyone in AA know how we really live, how I really act at home. Trust no one except me. Then comes the day when I cannot keep up my act and fall on my face. In my alcoholic paranoia I think your sponsor looked at me funny and the others who you talk to did also? What do they know! What did you tell them! You told them about me! You don't love me! You don't trust me! I hate you! I'm really sorry...Please come back, I'll never say anything like that again. C'mon, today is a new day right? Isn't that what AA say's. Each day a new beginning?
Wallowing in self pity. I have been so beaten up by reliving my supposed failures that I am easy to get along with now. I act serene, spiritual, but am really depressed.. I wake up with my horrors, my same old tunnel vision, abuse. Physical abuse, sexual abuse, all emotional, all very sick. I am sober and have so much love to give? I just want to be good to people. This attitude takes me out of myself. I find my new life, my single life, dating in AA. This can't be 13 Stepping? I don't think about anything but where and when we are having sex sure, but we're together.. How are we going to that place where we are sexual, physical, emotional. I have my spot sort of at the beach parking lot after the meetings. The girls like it and are as willing as I am to get there quick. I was sitting in a meeting looking around one night and had some kind of sexual contact with most of the gals there. New comers, oldtimers, it didn't matter. I certainly had no idea how my conduct affected others? Nobody called me on anything? It's just what we did. We were using eachother and telling ourselves it was alright, no harm done. Some would disappear never to be heard of again, some would stop talking to me and that usually meant they had begun some 12 Step work. Some had a stand offish hello and goodbye. Some were ready to get back to the beach. I just kept going to the meeting. I'd share whatever was the topic. I was happy really. I would share about being sober for the day or how I was grateful for working or money in my pocket, my truck, license, other benefits of sobriety. My life's achievements sober were a decent stereo in my truck, a cool belt buckle, I had made it to the dentist. I was good enough to date and girls wanted me. This was a first.
I just had no idea I was using people. I really believed I was just going along and no emotional attachment was needed. This is what it was like to date, I never date? I never dated people when I was drinking. After all, when I was drinking that's all I did really, drink! I felt as I was now living a part of my life I had missed in my alcoholic daze. When I had these people to use every night I hardly thought about my own past, my failures, my drunkenness. Self pity wouldn't last when I would feast on a plate full of people. I would hear the term 13 Stepper and didn't think it applied to me, how could it? I was in my 20's. 13 Stepper sounded bad and I wasn't bad? It sounded like the old geezer or pervert preying on the newcomer. How could that be me? I didn't want to hurt anyone? I didn't think so anyway. Truth be told? I rolled through peoples lives like a gravely brush cutter. Had I known better, maybe things would have turned out differently. Maybe.
The Big Book 12 Steps did materialize and well? Not a moment too soon. Sure, had I found the program I may never have had to beat myself and others senseless with my untreated emotional spree's. The other side of the coin is well? It takes what it takes. Me, them, it's all relative. Had I not bottomed out sober I probably would never have taken action because lets face it, Big Book 12 Steps would never have been my first choice unless I was ready to hang myself and completely out of options in AA. It was like Big Book 12 Steps wasn't AA. The Fellowship was AA, a holding pen, a warehouse for those who are not yet ready to surrender. I had played the Fellowship card for about a year this time. I had burned a lot of people sober with my selfishness I wasn't even aware of. I was floating in a thick cloud of what's wrong with me. I was completely out of control and going to meetings as if this was the program of recovery. For a time it was. I show up and feel better everytime. Meetings would save me. And yes meetings did save me but that was over.. There was no sober happy joy joy anything, there was only the hope of 12 Step salvage. At best I was back to where I started. The fear was so bad I was the only one at the meetings, I was the only one outside the meetings. No more people, dates, girlfriends or even wives. No AA friends at all. Nobody nothing. When the people disappeared? So did I. Without the people I could not see myself, I had nothing to arrange or control. No self esteem boost. No instant gratification. Everything was gone. Everything but the Big Book and the old sponsor who was watching me crucify myself on a daily basis. He waited until I was ready and then he knocked on the door. Oddly I had been sitting there contemplating cutting my head off with a chainsaw. I had myself pictured lying on the garage floor and dropping it on my neck wide open. The knocking had disturbed that thought.
Not only did the dating in AA stop but even the thought of it was somehow removed. I was into my recovery now. I was under new management.I had seen my selfishness and fear. I had seen my past my present and wanted a new future. I was worthy, I could have a new and emotionally healthy future. A future where I saw myself everyday. I was not afraid to see myself at any point in my day. Where I was responsible for myself and could be a power of example to others. Yes, this was possible for me. I was in time ready for Step 12. I would be willing to carry the message of recovery as a Big Book 12 Step guide. I was willing to show others how I recovered from the extreme selfishness and fear everyday. I was to show them the suggested Spiritual Path. This I could do, this I wanted to do. This is the Fellowship I crave today.
Not long ago a guy was wandering around the halls, picking up women as much as possible. He was hard to miss really. I overheard others saying they wanted him out of here! They said he wasn't there for himself or his sobriety. He was only looking to use others and screw up there sobriety. He was a 13 Stepper! I was asked to approach him and ask him to leave the meeting if he won't stay away from the gals. Someone said he was just there from the courts. Another said she sponsored one of the girls he picked up and he used her and she did drink over it..I said I'll talk to him.
I saw him show up a few nights later and went into one of the private rooms in the rectory where the meeting was. I got on my knees and prayed to not do or say anything that will hurt this guy. I prayer that he be shown the same patience and love I have been shown on the Spiritual path. I had an attitude of service, how can I help this guy, can I help this guy? I thought about working with others. Sure the other gals wanted to lynch him but that was really just gossip and criticiczm to me. They were emotionally charged up and I was concerned sure but not enough to feed off their emothins. I was myself and I knew my limitations with any new man not just this guy. I introduced myself even though we already met before. I told him I would like to talk if he would. Could we go outside and have a chat/ He said sure. I spoke of myself for a bit. My sex conduct, my searching for someone to fix the hole in my soul. I talked about how I cruised the AA meetings looking for miss right now!. How really I was lost and just had no idea what or where I was going. So, he opened up a bit and we had a few nervous laughs. We exchanged numbers and I picked him up the next night and the next, we started banging out meetings and reading at the Big Book. He wasn't really all that desperate for the 12 Steps so I introduced him to a friend who is kind of a 12/12 guy. He's more into 12/12 meetings where people read discuss and apply the 12/12 text to their lives.
Last I knew he was doing pretty good. According to my 12/12 buddy, he's been active with a group of guys, hitting commitments, getting active. My friend laughed when I asked about him. He said he doesn't have time for girlfriends or dates right now, he's into AA. He's got a car so I guess he's got a couple of guys he picks up from a halfway house who are oxy heads and don't know where they fit.