2014 Better Than I Imagined

So much happened this year I’m having difficulty believing it all fit in 365 days.


I started work with a new sponsor, Flo. Did another 4th and 5th Step. Sought his advice and direction in many things I’ve never asked a sponsor before, and its really changed who I am. Tonight at my meeting it was on Step 12 (Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics and practice these principles in all our affairs) and just reflecting on the step work this year and my willingness I think I finally feel some of that “joy” we talk about – I still think it’s a bit overrated, but maybe I’ll get used to it.

I sponsored 4 guys this year – one of them moved back to WI (Matthew); one of them got drunk again (Zack) and then sobered up again; one of them has been sober longer than I (Mark); and one of them just kind of disappeared (Jordan).  Each of them helped me tremendously this year and I’m glad that I had the opportunity to share with them (even if sometimes they don’t listen). The very first sponsee I ever had (David) passed away and I was with my current sponsor when I received the news.

I was involved in my home group’s retreat, our Traditions Breakfast and business meetings, inventory and was the Grapevine rep – I missed my home group twice this year – once because I was giving my 5th step, once because I was sick… felt guilt about both times.

With my AA brother Scott I traveled to see my sponsor in New Mexico. It was a spiritual experience.

I went to a Grapevine writing workshop and made a new friend (our area Grapevine rep)

I also was elected as Treasurer for the intergroup and my term starts in just a few weeks here… My sponsor was the treasurer a few years ago.

I have some new friends this year from AA that have made large contributions to my life… can’t mention them all here, but I miss them when I don’t see em… and some of them I even talk to outside of meetings lol

I am continuing to attempt to practice these principles in all our affairs – my life today is a direct result of AA and what that’s brought me. I celebrated 20 years of sobriety on May 8th of this year.


I had a horrible dental year – in March I had am implant put in and just this month my first root canal and 2 crowns.

I also managed to have an abscess on the back of one of my tonsils that caused me immense pain.

Otherwise, I’m happy and healthy (haven’t seen a regular doc so they’d likely disagree). I know I need to lose weight, exercise more and eat healthier… bah!

I did join a gay bowling league… so that’s exercise right? It’s a long season – started in September and doesn’t end until May… so I’m getting to know some new folks and that’s nice – one or two of them are cute too.


I’ve had a few dates (date is a strong word most of the time) with some nice guys… but generally I’ve decided I’m much too selfish to have a relationship with any of them… I just can’t bring myself to give up my free time or pretend that I’m remotely interested in things they like… so for the moment it’s just me and that’s ok, if I want to have fun with one of em I certainly have options.


I managed to get to Tucson, Sedona and Yuma for various reasons… all were doable with the top down and enjoyably so.

I moved from a 1 bedroom apartment to a studio in the same complex.

I flew to New Mexico to visit the sponsor, really was great to be away from it all (he wouldn’t share the wifi password so I couldn’t stare at my phone all day)

I did get to a MLB game, my first NFL game (Monday Night Football to boot)

I flew home to Washington DC for my friend Ana’s surprise birthday party and work.

I flew home to Wisconsin for Christmas – because my family likes the arctic wasteland and I love them… I guess lol. No I do, I just wish they’d all retire to warm places.


My ex-roommate of 15 years, Gary, came to visit me in January for a few days. It was very nice to get to see him and show him some of the sites in Arizona that he wanted to see (abandoned horse tracks). I missed him (even though I had seen him the previous fall in DC).

My old school friend Ted came to visit shortly after with his wife, Ted had lived here many years ago so knew what he wanted to see and do. I think they had a good time.

My friend Christopher from DC came to visit and we had dinner, he comes out here once a year for a conference so I expect to see him regularly. He’s a wonderful guy.

My best friend Suzanne met me in Yuma when she was in San Diego, I’d go to the ends of the earth (I’m pretty sure Yuma qualifies) to have dinner with her 🙂

My best friend Eric came out with his daughter, she was considering going to school out here. It was great to see them and show them around. We had a great visit.

Jim and Ana came to visit, we spent a great deal of time together and it filled my heart to have them here with me.


AZK12 – I started out the year in a job I wanted out of, the one that brought me to Scottsdale from DC.  I did get to help with their big event though and see teachers of AZ get recognition for achieving National Board and Master Teacher in early February, was pretty sweet. Work there was uncomfortable and the boss there was as happy as I to have me leave ASAP. She got her wish in February. I miss the other folks I worked with there.

H&U – I landed a job at an insurance agency the second week of February. When they offered me the job I was scheduled to have a second interview (a promising one) for an executive assistant just down the street, but my recruiter said “that’s more of the same and you said you wanted to do something different” I called my sponsor for his advice and left him a message and of course decided before he called me back (I’m working on that whole patience thing). You know when you interview at a place and they tell you “this is a busy position and has a steep learning curve” and you nod at them because everyone says that and then the job has 4 hours of down time a day and you want to nap due to boredom… yeah, this job meant it. Every day is a day when I feel like I don’t have time to stop – constant go go go… and I love it. I wasn’t sure it was going to take… really struggled the first few months there in my own head and with what I was learning (read about that here ).

Now I’m training, supervising and more and it’s frustrating and fun… A friend asked me what was my favorite job and it’s really this one… I work too much, they (my bosses) think… and they’re probably right, but it doesn’t feel like it, I don’t feel exhausted or stressed (too much)… I did fail the AZ Insurance Property and Casualty license exam four times (max you can take it in a calendar year) and three of the four times I scored 68% (need 70 to pass) fourth time was 64%.

I have new friends from work, respect most of my coworkers and am happy… really happy there. (don’t tell them and ruin my reputation or anything). I want to write about work, but need to be careful what I say now… maybe I’ll create an anonymous site to write about work.. probably 🙂

Jim – I still do work for my friend Jim. Accounting work, reports, IT… but it’s very little of my time. He’s a great guy and I flew out there this autumn to do some office work for a few days, he kept me busy and it was great to spend time with him and his boss (Ana 🙂 )


I have a life that I really love, filled with people I don’t just tolerate, but like (and sometimes love). I’m pretty happy with everything and I’ll keep striving to keep doing the things I’ve been doing for this life…. A great year, one day at a time.

(if I missed a highlight with you it’s not personal, get over yourself already)

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