Saturday, January 9, 2010

Sunday 1/10/10 - "BLANK PAGES"


"This year is a book of clean blank pages on which I will write a record of my experiences and my growth through the daily use of the Al-Anon idea. I turned to Al-Anon as a last resort because I was living with a problem that was too much for me. I know I can deal with this problem through applying Al-Anon to myself, to my thoughts and my actions, every day."
(From "One Day at a Time in Al-Anon", January 1, p. l)

I am so grateful that I can choose to begin this year with fresh, clean, blank pages. My life is a series of choices. I choose what thoughts will dominate my thinking. How I react to what others say and do is my choice as well. I choose how I wish to use the time I am given in a day. My attitudes are often formed by the thoughts I have chosen to focus on, be they negative or positive.

There was a time when I was unaware that the freedom to choose was mine. I felt a martyr and victim to life. I was often helpless and ineffectual. I had few coping skills. The result? I felt victimized and wondered why everything seemed to be stacked against me. I felt powerless, hopeless, and depressed.

Alcohol provided the solution to all this negativity. It made reality disappear. It provided a false feeling that nothing could hurt me and it made the pain go away. I was able to stop caring. This solution worked for only a short period of time. Within three years I was hopelessly controlled by alcohol. I was unable to choose whether I would drink or not. I drank daily. My ability to function deteriorated. I was approaching complete disaster.

Then I found sobriety through the grace of God. I was led to Alcoholics Anonymous where I found people who understood me. I asked a woman to be my sponsor. I worked the 12 steps of AA. I was released from the obsession and compulsion to drink. I learned how to not drink one day at a time.

When I was 19 years sober, God graced my life again by leading me to the Al-Anon program. What a wonderful gift. I wish I had found Al-Anon when I was 20 years old. But I am forever grateful I found it at all.

Today, with the AA and Al-Anon programs I know that I am powerless over alcohol and over people, places, and things. However, I also know that I am not powerless over my reactions. I have the choice to use the tools, slogans, steps of both programs.

Anytime I find myself in fear, worry, depression or anxiety, I can pick up a tool like the telephone to call another program member or go to a meeting. I can pray and have faith and trust that the Higher Power I am calling on will help me. These are choices that lead to positive outcomes. I have many personal experiences that show me God does hear and answers prayer.

Thank God I am able to turn to a blank page in my mind and start over anytime I need or want to. I can start over each day or even each moment if necessary. I am starting fresh right this moment. I am filling my mind with hope for a wonderful tomorrow for myself, those I love, and my blogging friends.

Prayer Girl

"Be kind; everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." - Plato


Cheryl said...

I love the fact that I can choose to start my day over at any point. Great post.

Paula said...

Funny, I started the year with a post on blank pages too. Great minds think alike ;-))) Thanks for your comment on my recent post. I am glad being given tools that I might not take me so long to get my stress leveled and even more so I highly appreciate the awareness I have developed towards helpful tools. Now it is about practice....

Shadow said...

i love the 'blank pages' concept...

Andrew said...

Thank you Anna.

It's always a pleasure to read here.

sarah said...

beautiful and powerful post of a true overcomer. Sarah

Lou said...

My post is about blank pages too..kinda..

it's about accepting our lives where we are today. Each day is an opportunity to be "present". Yeah!

otin said...

That Plato quote is brilliant! I always say that we are all fighting our own demons in one way or another!

A blank page represents the ability to start fresh, and that is such a positive thing!

Brian Miller said...

every year i get a new journal in matter how many pages are left the old one goes on the fresh it!

Pete Hoge said...

Through the program we
have a reset button and
we know that the Higher
Power shows mercy to us
and therefore loves us.

Thank you for your thoughts.


Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

Thank you! This is a wonderful cleansing proposal....

Starting, now.

Kim A. said...

Choices, victim, martyr...all words in my own story. How'd you know?? :-D I needed to read every word today. I am glad I live it one day at a time now. That is enough for me!


Just Be Real said...

His mercies are new every morning. Amen!

Superfluous Brunette said...

Self-Responsibility, such a simple concept but so difficult to do or notice we aren't doing. I am just learning this, just realizing my own victim mentality and that I am not realizing my strength which is there too. And as you said, it is also our choice of which thoughts we focus on. We so often think it is not our choice of what it is we think. We need to keep shedding light on ourselves to break through any addictions or self-sabotaging behaviours.
Looking forward to reading the blank pages that you fill.


Syd said...

I too wish that I had found Al-Anon at a much earlier age. It is such a great program.