Before my relapse, I did not really work a 12 step program. Now, I have
been clean and sober for 10 months, and I am still working on going
through the 12steps with my Alcoholics Anonymous sponsor.
I have started to have some cravings here and there and feel a little more depressed than usual, so my sponsor and I decided it was definitely time to keep moving forward with the twelve step programs.
When I told my Alcoholics Anonymous sponsor how I was feeling, she told me that any time I was feeling down or having cravings to go straight into prayer. I was a little skeptical at first – I try to pray but I do often forget. I definitely believe that there is something greater than myself out there, but I don’t know exactly what that is. I have started to use the word ‘God’ just because it’s the easiest thing to call whatever this greater power is.
I followed her direction and forced myself to go straight into prayer the second I started feeling anxious, depressed, or was having cravings. Amazingly, I very quickly began to feel better. Not only was I turning my will over to a greater power, but I wasn’t obsessing about how I was feeling. Starting to pray immediately got me thinking about something other than the negative feelings I was having.
When I told my sponsor I was doing this and it was working, she suggested we move on to step 4 of the Alcoholics anonymous 12 step program (taking an inventory and basically listing your resentments and how they affected you and what part you played in these events).
We decided I would have my 4th step completed by this Saturday, so I need to get started. My sponsor told me to have this step completed quickly because if you do your 4th step and then wait too long to go over it, you just have all these resentments out on paper and are remembering them. Until you turn them over to another human being and, more importantly, a higher power, these resentments are still blocking off a connection you should be having with your higher power.
My sponsor told me she has seen a lot of people relapse right around this time when they wait too long to turn over their resentments to a higher power. If I get all of this stuff down on paper and then a day or two later go over them with my sponsor and with my higher power, I won't be sitting around just thinking about it for too long.
I’m a little nervous to start working on it, but I know I need to keep moving forward. The first time I got sober, I never really went through any of the Alcoholics Anonymous twelve steps and never had a relationship with a higher power. I definitely think this played a big part in my relapse. I’m definitely willing this time to do whatever I have to do to maintain this connection with my higher power, including working the 12 step program, and to stay clean and sober.