When I first came to Al-Anon, I was not really teachable. I came because my husband had started going to A.A., and I thought I should be supportive; otherwise, he might drink again, and it would be my fault. Isn’t it interesting that God doesn’t care why we’re here, only that we’re here? He had to trick me into being here, because I certainly saw no reason for me to come on my own.
Eventually, although still in denial, I decided that I would make a commitment to myself. I would get a Sponsor and follow all of her suggestions, whether I agreed with them or not, and I would work the Steps to the best of my ability.
I had been sitting in meetings sharing, talking the talk, but not walking the walk, which made me a hypocrite. My reasoning was that by making that commitment, I would get through the Steps and find that I hadn’t changed at all. This would prove that I really didn’t need the program, and thus I could in good conscience no longer feel it necessary to attend meetings.
God has a sense of humor (thank goodness). I absolutely kept that commitment to myself to the very best of my ability, taking my time, attending meetings, doing service work, and when I got about half way through the Step work, I realized I had already changed. I hadn’t intended to change, nor had I made any effort to change. I had simply done the footwork required to keep my commitment. Again, God didn’t care about my motive, He only wanted me to take the actions. Taking the actions, doing the work, is what brings the results.
Today, I am grateful for my commitment in spite of my ignorance and arrogance. Next month, I will be celebrating 28 years in the program, and that would not have happened had I not been able to make a commitment and keep it with an open mind.
The Forum, February 2013