“That is the miracle of it. We are not fighting it, neither are we avoiding temptation. We feel as though we had been placed in a position of neutrality… the problem has been removed. It does not exist for us. We are neither cocky nor are we afraid. That is how we react so long as we keep in fit spiritual condition.” Bill Wilson
“Since you are primarily a spiritual and mental being you must rearrange your thoughts to meet, to agree with, to harmonize and unify with this new concept. No one can do this for you. You are starting out on a great adventure, a wonderful journey. You are guided by love, inspired by truth, and your future will be what you make it.” Ernest Holmes, “This Thing Called You”
A few months ago, on the evening of my 4th AA birthday, after a day filled with speaking gratitude and appreciation for my sobriety among other things with like-minded people, I sat at a bar in a hotel restaurant to eat dinner. Alone, but not because I orchestrated being alone like I used to in my old drinking days. Alone because it just worked out that way.
I felt totally comfortable as a party of one.
It was not a wild dive or a party bar in any way. It was in a hotel where I was staying for a few days. Dining choices were limited. I did not have a car. Room service was not offered. I felt serene and strong enough to enter the bar. Though the main motivation was hunger, I was immediately reminded that I still like bars.
At first I felt conspicuous and self conscious, and then realized absolutely nobody noticed me or paid any attention to me whatsoever. A man slid onto the barstool next to me and we exchanged a pleasant hello. He immediately pivoted his back toward me and went into jolly conversation with his friend. Probably best as what small talk could I make based on what was on my mind? “Congratulate me. Today is my AA birthday. I am 4.” Nah.
The atmosphere in the bar was calm and controlled. There was a duo playing guitars and singing folk songs. A local hockey game was broadcasting on television. No raucous cheering, dancing or anything reminiscent of bar scenes I recall from back in the day.
From a sobriety standpoint, I felt 100% safe and secure– zero temptation to drink anything but club soda, which I ordered and enjoyed with my burger (well ok, and fries too.) I could have ordered anything at all – food or drink – and absolutely no one would have questioned it. The desire to drink alcohol or even the slightest “what if?” was not on my radar whatsoever.
I know many alcoholics will not allow a drop of alcohol in their home, or even patronize places where it is served. I understand and respect that. I choose otherwise, knowing that my “self will” is aligned with God’s will and know without a doubt that sobriety is my clear and absolute choice.
To those who choose against serving alcohol at home I say, “Good choice. Don’t serve it.” To those who choose to steer clear of bars, I say “Good choice. Don’t go.”
For me, being in a bar is a completely different experience now, without the intention / obsession to drink non-stop until fully wasted, trying to disguise it as “unwinding” or “socializing.”
When I was out there, getting my hands on alcohol was not optional. It was mandatory, regardless of what distance or what obstacles I had to overcome to get it.
Today, sobriety is going to happen, no matter how close or available alcohol is. The obsession has lifted. I am not even obsessed about sobriety – the energy of obsession is gone.
I do not intend to start hanging out or dining in bars again. I do however feel grateful that no anxiety, fear or negative energy comes up if I end up in one.
I am guided by lovingly aligning my will with my Higher Power.
I am inspired by the truth of my newfound joy through my daily choice for sobriety, in full recognition that these daily choices create my future experience.
• Did your obsession lift gradually or in a powerful moment of truth?
• Do you find that the energy of obsessing about other things has lifted too?
In gratitude, harmony and support,