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Sunday, October 30, 2016
Good Morning, World!  It's 4:15am!  And one day away from Halloween Day! 

Gratitude List
1) Chalk rooms!!!
2) Clean kitchens!
3) Waking up at 4am and getting stuff done!
4) Halloween!
5) Overuse of exclamation points!!!!

Passage 1 - service,
We get so used to hearing Al-Anon described as a fellowship that we sometimes forget the significance to each of us personally of that word. The Oxford English Dictionary says that it is “Participation, community of interest, sentiment and nature; the spirit of comradeship…especially spiritual, etc.” In a fellowship, we give of ourselves and the more we give, the more we get.

If I go out of my way to help a fellow member in trouble, and try to help him or her understand a problem and deal with it spiritually, I am actually getting more than I give, for I learn more from examining my own ideas and clarifying them. Many a solution to a difficulty of my own has come to me while I was helping someone else.

The good that I get from the spiritual teachings of Al-Anon will work most fully for me as I use opportunities to give it away to someone else. In this fellowship, I am but a channel for God’s loving help.
“Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself?” - Romans


PASSAGE 2 - gratitude
When I was a newcomer to Al-Anon, I remember hearing people say that they were grateful to be involved with an alcoholic. Needless to say, I thought they were crazy! Wasn’t the alcoholic the cause of all their grief? I couldn’t believe that these people had anything to be grateful for. Yet they seemed to be happy despite their problems (which sounded exactly like my own).

Today I find that I am grateful to have found Al-Anon. I too needed to hit a kind of bottom, feel the pain, and reach out for help before I could find any lasting happiness. Because of Al-Anon, I have a relationship with a Higher Power that I never knew existed and friends who give me real support. 

I have learned that gratitude and forgiveness are necessary to my peace of mind. Now I can truly say I that I am a grateful member of Al-Anon.

Today’s Reminder
Today I will practice gratitude. I will think of some of the things, big or small, for which I am grateful. Maybe I’ll even put this list in writing or share it with an Al-Anon friend. Sometimes a tiny action can be a great step toward seeing my life with increasing joy.
“When things look blackest, it is within my power to brighten them with the light of understanding and gratitude.“ One Day at a Time in Al-Anon

**I had to laugh when I read the beginning.  I read so many different books on relationships before we got married.  It was Hubby's drinking which brought me to al anon and it is what I have needed my whole life.  I can be grateful in the drinking, in that way.  I am not grateful in other ways and I am certainly not grateful that hubby is this sick.  I wish we could still go wine tasting and have a glass at supper.  I even miss the denial. 

When I first found out about the sexual infidelity, I felt like my life was a facade.  In some ways, it was.  I told Hubby that I had lost my history.  He told me that all those times were still there and still real.  It was something I needed to hear.  Yes, I can define it differently.  I thought I was in a relationship with a committed man and I was, in a way.  He's just been sick this whole time, in some way and, that, I didn't see. I saw the marathons, I saw his physical fitness, I saw his success at work and I saw the fun we had together.  That was health to me.  I'm getting off track, but we did have fun.  I can look back at the last 12 years and say that we have had so many fun times together.  Peru was wonderful. So were all our vacations.  I loved cheering for him at his marathons, cooking together, going to family get togethers, binge watching shows and having junk food nights.  All those times really were good and fun!  I don't have to invalidate those and have decided I'm not going to.  We had a fantastic love story!  And I did have a great time in our relationship.

I miss that denial and wish I could slip back into it (at times).  There were negatives too, of course.  But, so many great times!  We've had great times since the kids were born too, of course.  More of those have been solitary with me.  This sickness has been hard on us.  His deepest spiral started when I got pregnant with L and J was only 14 months.  The beginning of J's life, still have that dream like relationship quality in my mind, despite some problems surfacing.  Hubby was a mess for the beginning of L's life.  And while we have many fun family moments, we don't have many great memories with just the two of us.

I am open and interested in what the future will bring.  Moving on......

PASSAGE 3 - trust/step2

I asked my sponsor to meet with me before the Al-Anon adult child meeting to talk about taking my Second Step: "Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity." She suggested we take a leisurely walk before the meeting and she listened patiently while I talked. I told her I thought I had the Power-greater-than-me part down, and the sanity or insanity part made sense, too. To me sanity meant being centered, feeling comfortable with myself. What escaped me about Step Two was "believing," not the abstract idea of believing, but the nuts-and-bolts "doing" that creates the basis for how I live my life. I asked how to transform the idea of believing into concrete action.

I can't remember what my sponsor said in reply to my frustration and confusion because a profound spiritual awakening overtook me. The moment will be forever frozen in time. The moon shone brightly over almost-bare autumn branches that swayed slightly overhead, sketching lines across the moonlight. The feeling that filled me that night was like the sun shining into my very being, bringing with it a burst of consciousness and clarity.

The answer to my dilemma arose from somewhere deep inside me. It was trust. Trusting, then acting on that trust, was how I could turn my belief into something tangible. I had never fully trusted anyone or anything-other than ideas-during my childhood. On that night, however, I knew my God was no longer just an idea. God became a great trust within me that will provide me daily, through the Al-Anon program, with all the guidance, comfort, and support I need to act faithfully on my beliefs.

Thought for the Day
Step Two invites me to develop my trust.
"I don't need to understand the Power greater than myself only to trust it." As We Understood. . ., p. 159

Looking forward to a joy filled day! 
It is now 5am.  I probably have a half hour before the little ones arise and I'm going to attempt to clean out the car.  I also should do budget stuff today and get halloween costumes together - eesh!


  1. Passage 1 totally describes our conversations! Passage 2 I get in a way. I hate my trial, but I otherwise would have remained in unhealthy patterns, so I'm definitely grateful to have learned of a new way of living and trusting God. Sometimes I miss the denial too. Those are the times I end up going back to unhelpful behaviors and feeling empty afterward. We too have had many fun times. To the hubby, that means success. To me, it isn't enough. I want emotional connection and health in our family, not just fun.