I was at a meeting a few months back and a guy shared about how he tended to lose girlfriends when he wouldn’t pay attention to them, didn’t show up, only showed up when he needed something or neglected them. They’d likely not be very happy with him and he’d have to work hard to keep the relationship or lose them. He then related that to his higher power – that’s how he sometimes treated his higher power, just there for his own purposes when he wasn’t busy or if he was in a jam. He asked us, was that a way to continue to have a healthy relationship with that higher power that you need to stay sober.
I honestly thought it was a pretty decent analogy – but all through his share I was applying it to the home group (not the higher power). I think a home group is the same way – if we treat it with respect, attend regularly and love it (I use Chuck C’s definition of love “service – giving of your self completely expecting nothing in return”) it’s going to continue to grow and prosper. If we fail to attend regularly or only show up for the spot check sobriety stop when we’re particularly resentful it’s going to lose its specialness.
If I don’t water the plants each week at the office they’ll die, maybe not today or tomorrow but that lack of sustenance is what it relies on. We have to treat the things we need in life – in life – the same way. Is this thing – this job, this meeting, this person – something I want to continue? Is it something that I would like to stay around not just for the benefit of me, but for the benefit of others? If so, what am I wiling to do to help that continue – to help it grow, change and bear fruit?
Sometimes I get all full of self-righteousness and don’t want to do all the work that’s required for these things. I’d like to sit back and let other people shake hands, clean up, set up the meeting – I’m pretty grumpy when that kind of thought process is going on, but I do still get that way. I can be silent, frown a lot and rub my “no questions” tattoo… but it’s really me that’s screwed up. I’m letting imaginary feelings and misinterpreted words screw with my serenity. I can fix it, sometimes I fix it in a snarky way… but usually i fix it by giving of myself, expecting nothing in return. That whole being selfless thing is what helps make me a good person again – when I’m full of self I’m not really me at all… (don’t make me angry… you wouldn’t like me when I’m angry)
Tonight a bunch of old friends and I were texting and something we loved is changing or dying. There was some finger-pointing and some blame placing… It saddens me. I’m well removed from the area now, so it’s probably easy for me to sit back and not be emotionally invested, I haven’t been a part of this thing since I moved really. This thing we created though… it changed me (and I fought it tooth and nail), it gave me new friends (and I don’t like people), it gave me new experiences…. I’m pretty happy that happened. I wish I could save it but I don’t live there anymore and as much as I wish it otherwise – I’m not a superhero.
My friends who are there – thank you for being my friends, I’m so glad we created this thing and grew with it. If you save it or let it go – maybe it’s not a choice for us…. either way, it was an experience.