these people are still a part of that system and that makes them our enemy. You have to understand that most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inert, so hopelessly dependent on the system that they will fight to protect it.Morpheus, The Matrix
Despite the grandiose title living the solution, it is something I am doing. I have never completed the 12 steps or completed a 12 step programme before. But today I am 224 days sober.
Yesterday I was cycling to meet a friend in central. It was on my journey that I was speeding along, minding my own business, when a car pulled out onto the road. I slammed on the breaks and found myself in a brace position. I slammed into the side of the car.
The car pulled away and left me. This is the fifth or sixth time I’ve been hit by a car pulling out of a junction in the past year. This isn’t the first time I’ve nearly ended underneath a car. As I continued the cycle on I made sure the driver knew how I felt by providing a knowing stare into the car.
Life could end at any minute
It is these moments I am reminded that life could end at any moment. In active addiction I used to plan my funeral. I would have an edited version of “I know where I’ve been” from Hairspray sung, in a final act of defiance and acceptance. This was so sad. Because in addiction; where was I really headed?
My sponsor reminds me on a daily basis. This is a programme of action. Not just experience, strength and hope. But of action.
Each meeting I attend, each share I listen to, each piece of service, each text and telephone call is a micro action that is painting a larger piece of recovery.
Every defect, every resentment is highlighted, rubbed away and a new piece of me, an asset is put in its place.
I am stubborn and proud
My own defect of stubbornness and pride is being revealed and erased away as I read chapters from the Big Book. To take the first step is a profound moment of accepting; I am not alone, I have a disease, there is a solution and I can hand it over.
All my sins erased away with love, community, healing and compassion. Through fellowship and meetings. My own experiences are not isolated; a religious upbringing, sexual trauma, HIV diagnosis and so on.
I may be powerless but I do have choices
Early on my in recovery we spoke of our own power and powerlessness. I do have power and I have choices. I have the choice to submit to a programme that keeps me sober. It’s a programme where I am able to admit my mistakes and seek personal spiritual growth.
When I feel like using I remind myself of the carnage of active addiction, I pray for help and ask myself what action would future me want me to take today? Where will I say I’ve been; a dodgy flat with loads of drugs in south London with people who don’t care, or a person of progress, change and service?
Today I am grateful for a programme of action which is changing my future projectory and for one which I will look back with humbled pride.