Some years after coming through the worst pain and grief I could have imagined with the help of my group, my sponsor, and daily application of the tools of the program, I was certain that the pain was behind me and that I could face anything. I felt so much better. I could sleep, eat, think, and work. I could even play and laugh. I relaxed. And I relaxed my grip on my program.
My career was demanding, but I was succeeding in both my personal and work life. I studied the Steps and Traditions, prayed, went to meetings, and sponsored others. On some days, that is. On others, I forgot. I dove right in to handling my life, while paying attention to my program on the side.
I was brought up short when my daughter was diagnosed with a chronic illness, and I moved back into grief quickly and deeply. Many of my character defects returned in milder, but recognizable, form to cause trouble for me once again. Instinctively, I reached for my tools, my group, and my sponsor. They saved me again, providing a sure center for me to hold on to.
I believe that my program will never fail me, unless I fail to use it. I sometimes want to be “normal” and not take the time for regular attention to my spiritual program. While my program will always be there waiting for me, I believe that I do irreparable damage to my mind, body, and spirit when I neglect to care for myself. I can never afford to forget that I have been affected by this disease. Because of that, I require special care daily.
Reprinted from the Winter 2011 issue of S-Anews©.