24 May 2009

12th Stepping

As an alcoholic, I try my best to live by the 12-steps. The 12th step was written to help others ‘see the light.’ But more times then not, I’m 12-stepth more then I 12-step others. The 12th step basically says ‘having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, I will carry this message to other alcoholics.”

In my first book Damaged Merchandise, I mentioned a guy named Mike. A practicing alcoholic who tried numerous methods to control his drinking. Only on weekends, only after dark, never after midnight, the list is endless. It was through his insanity that I was able to see my own ‘sickness.’ I knew all these methods and all those games. They didn’t work for me and they didn’t work for Mike. Eventually, his drinking got him in trouble with the law and he was fired.

This last week I was 12th step again. A person I met and worked with for awhile was sentenced to 20-30 years in the state pen. What he did, many years ago, I did. As a young man I didn’t think of any consequences, nor with my drinking did I really care. This guy was in the wrong place at the wrong time, trusted too much and basically wasn’t thinking. He helped me realize how insane my life was and how out of control it had become. What had happened to him, very easily could have happened to me. I guess the most valuable thing about ‘12-stepping’ is the humility to realize that I am not “holier then thou.” We all make mistakes, but some seem to pay a price harder then others.

Why I’m not in jail or why I’m not dead – I really don’t know. Only God knows. So today, I will continue on my journey – sober. And I’ll always be grateful that He watched out for me and never gave up…

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