I went over to my back-up sponsor's house yesterday. The original plan was to start work on the 4th step using the Joe and Charlie tapes. Joe and Charlie are a couple of old timers in AA who got together to study the Big Book together, somewhere along the line they started doing their study with large groups of people. The studies have become popular within AA and my sponsor uses them as a guideline for working the steps with others. After we talked about certain things yesterday, she asked if I would be willing to go through the whole series of tapes and the steps again. She said she has found the tapes have been most helpful to people with a few years in recovery. My answer was sure. We have placed no deadline on completing the tapes or steps, due to our schedules, we will try and get together weekly but this may not always be the case.
As some know my sponsor isn't easily available and I have been mentally playing around with the idea of getting a new sponsor for this reason. The back-up sponsor is someone I see almost weekly at my home group and the person I use most often as a sounding board for what is going on in my life. Thing is though, I haven't committed myself to talking to one person on a regular bases. Some may think this is no big deal but for me it is. I need to lower my pride and face my fears. By talking to someone on a regular bases, I am allowing my God to work for me through others. I need to hear and talk about perspectives, I need to hear constructive criticism. I don't tend to make a lot of rash decisions but I still make my share of mistakes based on my ideas of what is best for me or my interpretation of God's will. I need a mentor because self mentoring isn't the healthiest thing for this old ex-drunk to do.
I am willing to work the steps again because I understand there is more which needs to be revealed. I need to look at my actions and thinking thus far on my road of recovery. I need to see where I have been right and wrong, to see the patterns and make adjustments if need be. When I had those 9 years of recovery in the past, I never reworked the steps. I believe in hindsight this added to my relapse. I have heard many an older member say they have worked the steps over a few times because life changes once we get sober and we need to evaluate the changes. Reworking the steps is a way of evaluating my emotional and spiritual sobriety. Working them with a new sponsor is an opportunity to get rigorously honest with yet another person. To say I don't fear another relapse would be a lie, I understand way to well how subtle complacency can sink in, how patient a foe alcoholism is. I go to meetings, I talk to people in recovery, I do a 10th step, I practice the 11th step and try to do service work when I can. Yet I believe there is still more work to be done.
In the last 4-1/2 years since I quit drinking I have gone through a lot of major changes and events. The stuff with my daughter, my parents, jobs, relationships. My spiritual path has been opened as well. All these things have a direct correlation on how I am living the steps. So when the suggestion was made to rework the steps, I was willing to say yes.
This is just what is going on with me. Just part of my journey I thought I would share with you.
Peace Love and Light