Al-Anon Lifer

Anonymous sharings from a long-time member of Al-Anon, which is a safe place to recover from the effects of alcoholism in a friend or relative...

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

On the Return of Characer Defects

Oh, those pesky woodpeckers. They show up every spring and where one hole is patched, another hole is drilled right around the corner. Every morning, as I sit down for my cup of coffee and "quiet" time, I almost immediately have to get up, unlock the front door, and step around the front of the house to scare away a woodpecker, often several times. Eventually, if I'm lucky, that works.

But there are days like today when I've been on vacation for a week and the hole is almost ready for a nest. The woodpecker, like a character defect, is more determined to set up housekeeping. I realize that my real problem is more often than not the lack of meetings or mini-meetings with my sponsor, program friends, and sponsees. I've let life get to me and began focusing on stuff, real or imagined.

It doesn't take long for me to get angry at a bird that is just doing what his/her species do. Mainly because I am on the verge of being angry at God for sending me stuff I can barely handle, and certainly not handle alone. I want to fill my life with activity, busyness, to avoid the pain I'm feeling. I start living in the future, or worse, the past. Then I remember to work Step 11 and ask God for guidance Just for Today.

It doesn't take long for serenity to begin to return and my character defects to lift, if indeed I let God do what God does best - give me the wisdom to know what I can and can not do with my current circumstances as well as my loved ones'. When I rely on God, my burdens also lift and life feels easier. I don't have to worry or be depressed or get angry. I can be calm and take care of myself so I am better able to help others. Or I can ask for help from others.

What a concept! Maybe that is what I really need to do. I am only human, after all, and can only handle so much on my own. I'm grateful that I am not alone - I have God, I have Al-Anon, and I have family. Thank you, God, for reminding me of what I've gained from my program. Amen.

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At Wednesday, May 06, 2009 11:00:00 AM, Blogger Gin said...

I was just thinking that I have been getting away from focusing on myself and I have been focusing too much on what my husband has been doing wrong. Time to get back to self. Therapy today and Al-anon on Friday. Thanks for the reminder.

At Wednesday, May 06, 2009 12:34:00 PM, Blogger Syd said...

Good reminder for me today. Thanks!

At Wednesday, May 06, 2009 7:09:00 PM, Blogger Cindy said...

Hi, my name is Cindy, very grateful member of AlAnon. Thank you. I needed this. Especially the part about leaning on God (my words). Having left my church of 50 yrs a yr. ago, I've distanced myself SO much that I need to constantly remind myself that it wasn't God that I let hurt me, it was the humans in an organized religion that lost their focus.


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