Serenity by the Sea


Such a great name for our local annual convention that consists of a full weekend of round-the-clock meetings for the entire 12 Step Community: people in AA, Al-Anon, and any other Assorted Anons gathering for luncheons, dinner, and spiritual messages with the centerpiece being the Saturday night dinner and speaker. Although I didn’t attend the dinner, I did manage to get there for an amazing yoga class and a women’s meeting – very good.


Thanks to my friend Cathy who did get to the dinner, and who does “get” me – she strongly suggested I purchase the CD of the speaker’s talk. She was right. Samantha from Santa Barbara, hilarious but to-the-heart, is the perfect thing to listen to in my car (anywhere, really, but my car is where I can best hear a CD).


Many great lines, but one that stands out is how she thought she came in to find relief, but what she really unknowingly wanted – and received – was freedom. Relief is temporary – and it’s a lot better than the agony of withdrawal, or the edginess of obsessing over a drink or a “something.” But it’s the long term freedom we all really seek – and what we ultimately find in recovery.


Sobriety was not her topic, she said. Recovery is the ticket. It’s a practice, and it’s done over the long term. Some days are easier than others, let’s be real. Some people relapse, as she did years ago. It happens. Ultimately, it’s the practice of starting again, doing the thing, and building time.


Once it kicks in and sticks, The Promises come true. As boldly stated: Promises. Not Possibilities or even Probabilities. Promises. Defined by Google as: “a declaration or assurance that one will do a particular thing, or that a particular thing will happen.” I would say that the 12-Step Promises are an assurance that IF one will do a particular thing, a list of particular other things WILL happen. Promise.


I am reveling in the month that marks my eighth year of Recovery. All the clichés people state when they take a chip or cake, like “I can’t believe it. I couldn’t have gone eight hours back in the day…” All true for me. However trite it sounds, it’s in the simplicity of the words we say, backed by the depth of the principles we “practice practicing” in all our affairs that make the difference from being a victim of our challenges to living victoriously, authentically, and happily – ever after!



In gratitude, harmony, and support,



Serenity by the Sea

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