Tag Archives: alcoholics

2015 AA International Convention

60,000 pack the Georgia Dome for what might be the biggest AA meeting in history.

 

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OH MY GOD I MADE IT!

When I got sober in 2009, I heard about AA’s International Convention coming to Atlanta in 2015 and thought, I wonder if I’ll stay sober that long.  I am grateful, blessed, and thoroughly excited to report that I am still sober and I have a ticket to the convention starting tonight!!

I will want to remember every moment, which is much easier to do these days now that I am sober.  I will try to write a little about the experience, but no promises as these days I have a BIG FAT LIFE!

God bless you all and see you in Atlanta!!

News stories from Atlanta:

AA convention adds to active July 4th weekend downtown 

AA Celebrates 80 Years Of Helping Alcoholics Stop Drinking

July 3, 2015

My husband and I traveled down to the city on Marta from our home north of…

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2015 AA International Convention

Capture

OH MY GOD I MADE IT!

When I got sober in 2009, I heard about AA’s International Convention coming to Atlanta in 2015 and thought, I wonder if I’ll stay sober that long.  I am grateful, blessed, and thoroughly excited to report that I am still sober and I have a ticket to the convention starting tonight!!

I will want to remember every moment, which is much easier to do these days now that I am sober.  I will try to write a little about the experience, but no promises as these days I have a BIG FAT LIFE!

God bless you all and see you in Atlanta!!

News stories from Atlanta:

AA convention adds to active July 4th weekend downtown 

AA Celebrates 80 Years Of Helping Alcoholics Stop Drinking

July 3, 2015

My husband and I traveled down to the city on Marta from our home north of Atlanta.  We arrived at the World Congress Center and were greeted by some excited volunteers who said, Hi!  You made it!  We’ve been waiting for you!, which I thought was cute.  Certainly they are aware of the alcoholic’s large ego!  The congress center is huge and sprawling.  There were so many people, but you are just going to have to trust me on that because it’s important that we don’t post pictures of peoples faces in order to protect their anonymity.

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We followed the maze of people into a large – really large – room with long lines of folks picking up their badge holders.  Luckily, we managed to reach the end of the line before they closed and were able to pick up our packet, which included a Program of Events, an order form to purchase CDs of the convention meetings, a reminder to purchase a panoramic convention photo, and a bookmark listing all of the convention cities going back to 1950.

Next, we found the volunteer room, where my husband was happy to see some friends from his old home group.  We picked up our lime green volunteer shirts with the emblem you see above – pretty!  We will volunteer on Saturday before the big meeting as greeters.

By then, we were both ready to find some coffee and a smoking section.  We found both!  We also found an old sponsee of mine and had a great time catching up.  All along this journey we met people from Canada, Hawaii, Florida, Virginia, and some more places I have forgotten.  People were friendly and happy to be there.

I am really looking forward to today when the meetings start.  I’ve picked out three for every time slot and will have to decide on one!  After last night’s two-hour journey to get home on Marta, I’ve decided to sport tennis shoes today.  If you are out there, please say hello.  I’ll be wearing my turquoise “We are not saints” shirt!

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July 4, 2015

4th Step Questions

SEX

12×12 p.49 Did I lust for sex?

12×12 p.43 Have I ever placed the sex desire above everything else?

12×12 p.43 Did I threaten my chance for material security?

12×12 p.43 Did I threaten my chance for emotional security?

12×12 p.43 Did I threaten my standing in the community?

12×12 p.44 Did my pursuit of sex result in my trampling upon people who happened to be in the way?

12×12 p.50 When, and how, and in just what instances did my selfish pursuit of the sex relation damage other people and me?

12×12 p.50 What people were hurt?

12×12 p.50 How badly were those people hurt?

12×12 p.50 Did I spoil my marriage?

12×12 p.50 Did I injure my children?

12×12 p.50 Did I jeopardize my standing in the community?

12×12 p.50 How did I react to these situations at the time?

12×12 p.50 Did I burn with guilt?

12×12 p.50 Did I insist that I was the pursued and not the pursuer, and thus absolve myself?

12×12 p.50 How have I reacted to frustration in sexual matters?

12×12 p.51 When denied, did I become vengeful?

12×12 p.51 When denied, did I become depressed?

12×12 p.51 Did I take it out on other people?

12×12 p.51 If there was rejection or coldness at home, did I use this as a reason for promiscuity?

12×12 p.52 What sex situations have caused me anxiety?

12×12 p.52 What sex situations have caused me bitterness?

12×12 p.52 What sex situations have caused me frustration?

12×12 p.52 What sex situations have caused me depression?

12×12 p.52 Do I lack the ability to accept conditions I cannot change?

MATERIAL/FINANCIAL SECURITY

12×12 p.43 Did I hoard money?

12×12 p.43 Did I become a miser?

12×12 p.44 Did my pursuit of wealth result in my trampling upon people who happened to be in the way?

12×12 p.51 What character defects contributed to my financial instability?

12×12 p.51 Did fear and inferiority about my fitness for my job destroy my confidence and fill me with conflict?

12×12 p.51 Did I try to cover up those feelings of inadequacy by bluffing?

12×12 p.51 Did I try to cover up those feelings of inadequacy by cheating?

12×12 p.51 Did I try to cover up those feelings of inadequacy by lying?

12×12 p.51 Did I try to cover up those feelings of inadequacy by evading responsibility?

12×12 p.51 Did I try to cover up those feelings of inadequacy by griping that others failed to recognize my truly exceptional abilities?

12×12 p.51 Did I overvalue myself and play the big shot?

12×12 p.51 Did I have such unprincipled ambition that I double-crossed and undercut my associates?

12×12 p.51 Was I extravagant?

12×12 p.51 Did I recklessly borrow money?

12×12 p.51 Was I a pinchpenny?

12×12 p.51 Did I refuse to support my family properly?

12×12 p.51 Did I cut corners financially?

12×12 p.51 Did I get involved in “quick money” deals like the stock market or races/gambling?

12×12 p.51 Did I juggle charge accounts?

12×12 p.51 Did I manipulate the food budget?

12×12 p.51 Did I gamble?

12×12 p.51 Was I irresponsible with money?

12×12 p.51 Was I wasteful with money?

12×12 p.52 What financial situations have caused me anxiety?

12×12 p.52 What financial situations have caused me bitterness?

12×12 p.52 What financial situations have caused me frustration?

12×12 p.52 What financial situations have caused me depression?

12×12 p.49 Did I eat, drink or grab for more of everything than I needed?

12×12 p.49 Did I fear I would never have enough?

12×12 p.49 Was I lazy?

12×12 p.49 Did I loaf and procrastinate?

12×12 p.49 Did I work grudgingly and under half steam?

12×12 p.52 Do I lack the ability to accept conditions I cannot change? If I am able to change something, am I willing to take the measures necessary to change them?

EMOTIONAL SECURITY

12×12 p.44 Did I make demands on others for too much attention?

12×12 p.44 Did I make demands on others for too much protection?

12×12 p.44 Did I make demands on others for too much love?

12×12 p.43 Was I determined to depend completely upon a stronger person for guidance and protection?

12×12 p.43 Did I fail to meet life’s responsibilities with my own resources?

12×12 p.43 Did I fail to grow up?

12×12 p.43 Was I disillusioned?

12×12 p.43 Did I believe myself helpless?

12×12 p.53 Did I insist upon dominating the people I knew?

12×12 p.53 Did I habitually try to manipulate others to our own willful desires?

SOCIETY (COMPANIONSHIP)

12×12 p.44 Did my pursuit of prestige result in my trampling upon people who happened to be in the way?

12×12 p.43 Did I attempt to rule my fellows?

12×12 p.44 Did I impose my instincts unreasonably upon others?

12×12 p.43 Did I become a recluse and deny myself both family and friends?

12×12 p.47 Did I play the big shot?

12×12 p.47 Did I harbor grudges?

12×12 p.47 Did I plan revenge?

12×12 p.49 Did I covet the possessions of others?

12×12 p.49 Did I lust for power?

12×12 p.49 Did I become angry when my instinctive demands were threatened?

12×12 p.49 Was I envious when the ambitions of others were realized?

12×12 p.53 Did I develop hurt feelings or a sense of persecution?

12 Step Call

Today I went on the first real 12th step call I’ve ever been on, and it was so very sad.  I always wondered what that would be like. It was not glamorous at all.

An alcoholic in his cups is an unlovely creature.
-BB p.16, Bill’s Story

She reeked of alcohol.  There were bottles everywhere.  We threw them away.  One – a vodka bottle – still had vodka in it.  It made me thirsty!  How can I be witnessing such horror and still have a mental pull towards that poison?  (Clearly, the answer is that I am an alcoholic!)

We told her we loved her.  We told her about the solution.  We took her to a hospital.  She almost wouldn’t go with us. I told her I believed her only other choice was to stay here and die an alcoholic death.

To be doomed to an alcoholic death or to live on a spiritual basis are not always easy alternatives to face.
-BB p.44, We Agnostics

She is on suicide watch.  The back story I will not tell here.  But oh, God, how sad I feel.  This disease is so horrible.  What it does to us is so, so very tragic.

I suspect this won’t be the last time I am a witness to the terrible reality of alcoholism if I am to stay sober.  It made me think of all the people I have seen come in and go back out of my home group in the last couple of years.  So many people…where did they go? What will become of them? Are they alive? Why do some people get to stay and others have to continue this battle they will never win?

He begged the doctor to tell him the whole truth, and he got it. In the doctor’s judgment he was utterly hopeless; he could never regain his position in society and he would have to place himself under lock and key or hire a bodyguard if he expected to live long. That was a great physician’s opinion.
-BB p.26, There is a Solution

Please pray for D.

When Love Is Not Enough

Tonight another alcoholic and I drove to Legacy at Lake Lanier Islands for AA Woodstock of the South and were delighted to see the Christmas light show on our way to the conference!

At the conference, we heard Bill & Bernadette B. of S.C. tell their alcoholic/alanon stories.  Bill told about the collection of interviews he did with Lois Wilson, whose story is told in this movie.

Bill said that Lois told him that Bill Wilson always felt like he was a failure at everything. Ha! Doesn’t God have a wonderful sense of humor?! I need to remember that next time I feel down on myself.

I had a bad drunk/relapse dream last night – I suspect as a result of my AA anniversary coming up in a few days – and had been feeling disconnected from my higher power today.  Bill B. said exactly what I needed to hear to bring me back:  Bill’s mother-in-law would annoy him when he was drinking – every time he came home drunk, she would be in the dining room with her rosary beads and prayer cards and bible.  One time he even yelled at her.  But then, after he got sober, she sat down beside him and said, “You know, when I read the bible and think about all the miracles God has performed, I’ve often wondered what it would be like to witness a miracle like that.”  Then she put her hand on his shoulder and said, “And now I have.”

Who knows what God has in store for this one of His many miracles!

Are you a miracle too?  Let me hear from you!!

Archives Collection at Prepaid Convention

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AA Archives

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Speakers Panel

This morning we heard the convention speakers talk about the convention’s theme: AA’s Future!

Points made:

Buying AA-approved conference literature to sell at our home groups supports AA.

Group inventories are as important as personal inventories for change and growth.

We need to be teaching the traditions to our sponsees and in our home groups.

We each need to be at group conscious meetings to vote and “to do what the Master would do.”

We should ask ourselves, “What do I bring to the dance?”

The mind and efforts of man could not have brought AA about; therefore, the future is in God’s hands too!

We should carry the undiluted message the way the Big Book tells us to.

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Charlie Y., Savannah, GA

Just heard a wonderful story from Charlie Y. of Savannah, Georgia full of colloquialism, flashbacks, and dialogue.

He has been sober for 18 years.  He told about the day he “quit drinking” and how that lasted about a month…then how he “quit for good” and that lasted a few weeks…and then how he “quit for real”…  Eventually he was crawling around in a 9 x 7 jail cell floor and it occurred to him that he couldn’t quit drinking.

When he got out of jail, his wife took him to a mental institution where it sounded like they pumped him full of Thorazine.

He told us of his early childhood – how mom left him – and his days in Vietnam – by describing how he answered the questions of the counselor who wanted to discuss his “issues.”  But every time he told the counselor his issue was that he couldn’t quit drinking, the counselor tried to direct him back to the symptoms of his problem – not the real problem – which was, of course, he couldn’t quit drinking.

At a certain point in the drinking of every alcoholic, he passes into a state where the most powerful desire to stop drinking is of absolutely no avail.  This tragic situation has already arrived in practically every case long before it is suspected.

The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost the power of choice in drink.  Our so-called will power becomes practically nonexistent.  We are unable, at certain times, to bring into our consciousness with sufficient force the memory of the suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago.  We are without defense against the first drink.

Luckily, he was given the opportunity to go to an AA meeting and there he met a man who understood his problem and said, “That’s my problem too!”  He went to two more meetings, got a sponsor, and got a job making coffee that same day.  He was told to say, “It’s good to see you,” to every person who walked through the door.

He took us through his journey through the steps and continued to stress how “Just don’t drink and go to meetings” is enough to kill an alcoholic “like Charlie.”  That might work for the heavy drinker or the person who hasn’t yet lost the choice, but it won’t work for the alcoholic “like Charlie.”  We have to work the steps to develop a relationship with a power greater than us that will one day be the only thing that stands between us and a drink.

Charlie had us all laughing until he told us about the day that relationship he had developed with his creator through working the steps was the only thing that stood between him and a drink.  It was the day his son died – you could say of alcoholism – when his son rolled his jeep over.  At this, the girls around me passed around tissues.  The amazing part of that story was the way his sponsor and grand-sponsor supported him through it.

Eighteen years later, if you go to his group in Savannah on Mondays or Thursday nights, you’ll find Charlie there, making coffee, and he will say, “It’s good to see you.”

I Love AA Conventions!!!

I am packing to go to the 58th annual Georgia Prepaid Convention in Gainesville, Georgia!!!!

58th Annual Georgia Prepaid Convention Agenda

58th Annual Georgia Prepaid Convention Flyer