Endigar 819

From Courage to Change of March 27;

I used to think that living meant surviving from crisis to crisis. I continued to function this way as an adult because it was the only way I knew.

Since that time, the Al-Anon fellowship has become like family to me. Our Twelve Traditions help me learn how a healthy family group functions. Today, when a problem involving other people arises, I turn to the Traditions for guidance.

They have made it possible for me to be part of a group that encourages my growth. They have led me to learn to detach, to respect other people’s privacy, and to find some release from my need to dominate and control. Because of the Twelve Traditions, I have discovered that I am an important member of any group in which I take part. I have a sense of my own value, as well as my limitations. As a result, I am developing “the wisdom to know the difference” between what I can change and what I must accept.

Today’s Reminder

Because the Traditions are based on spiritual principles, they often apply to personal matters as well as group concerns. When I get tangled up in problems with other people, the Traditions can offer guidance and perspective.

“The Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions embody principles that lead to recovery and personal growth, helping each of us to discover and become the person we want to be.” ~ Al-Anon Spoken Here


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A counselor once surprised me with the notion that family’s are supposed to improve the lives of their members and all of the individual efforts should be fashioned to achieve that goal. It made sense after he described this ideal to me. When I examined my own view of family, I saw wagons circled in the desert protecting us from the savage outsiders. Protected status in the home required me to know certain code words and behaviors to stay free of “friendly fire.”

I carried this skilled façade into the creation of my own family. There were things that we should have addressed that I blamed on Satan. Satan was code for repressed and forbidden conversations. Until there was an epic crisis completely out of my control, I remained in a state of religiously supported co-dependent self-delusion.

The Twelve Steps empowered me to quit blaming Satan and outsiders and take responsibility for the realities of my life. This is life on life’s terms for me. Although I am not currently able to colonize on that planet called Truth, I tighten my orbit every day. I examine my motives and refuse to accept fear as invincible. As a result, I have developed these three skills:

  1. I have empathy for those who suffer directly and indirectly from addiction, whatever form it takes. That empathy includes allowing consequences to unfold according to the expression of free will.
  2. I detach from the morbid condemnation of myself and others and objectively review the facts of obstacles in my life. Facts are our friends.
  3. I seek to learn from failures and improve the way I live, testing fantasy against flesh, and offering, when asked, whatever lessons I have learned along the way.


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