The lilacs are blooming here now. The aroma is floating throughout the city. I’m still here to be able to enjoy them for yet another season. What happened in Orlando this week reminded me of how very precious and how very short our life here is so I’m glad to be able to smell lilacs today.
Last night I went to my second AA meeting in the last week and a half. I’ve been in and out of AA for years so I don’t mean this is only my second meeting; it’s my second meeting I attended after wandering off the path quite some months ago.
I remember former pastor Rob Bell saying in one of his podcasts on The Robcast that he attended these meetings at the recommendation of someone in recovery. That particular someone told Rob to attend AA meetings to become a better pastor. What struck Rob Bell was that this was a place was a no bullshit zone. A true reflection of people who have come to realize that sobriety is not achieved by yourself and that you have to be willing to surrender…and no more bullshit.
At the meeting last night I listened to so many men and women being completely honest about their defects of character, about how Step Four transformed their lives and their sobriety. And I realized that I need to step out of the bullshit zone. The zone of rationalizing, lying to friends and family to cover up my drinking, lying to colleagues, lying to myself, and to begin to address my pride–which has been the biggest stumbling block to my sobriety.
The latest relapse stings because in light of how many people lost their lives in Orlando in the blink of an eye, I feel my pride or arrogance that life will always be there, has also made me take this gift of life for granted…often and a lot. How many days have I burned up drinking, numbing and staring blankly at the TV screen hour after hour? I know I’d want those days back if I was facing my death. So I realized last night and today that it’s a gift. Still being here. Still being able to make a better choice.
And for that I’m grateful.