Meetings can be our life blood when we are new to recovery. They connect us with others and let us know we are not alone in our struggles. Meetings offer a wealth of knowledge from persons with more sobriety than us, and they help everyone to stay sober.
When we can’t get to a meeting, especially when we are new to sobriety, we may feel guilty. We could worry people in our meeting will think we’ve had a relapse. We can become anxious and even panic. Perhaps we are trying to achieve a goal to attend 90 meetings in 90 days. We then may admonish ourselves by saying, now what, I’ve failed again.
We know sobriety has to be our number one focus, but sometimes we can’t make it to a meeting. Things come up like having the flu, needing to get medicine for a sick parent, or your spouse can’t take care of the kids that night. Whatever it is, we need to tell ourselves we are fine and we’ll be fine.
What can we do if we are afraid we’ll pick up a bottle on our way home from our parent’s house? We can ask ourselves a few questions. Are our fears realistic? Are we in the habit of being dramatic? While being concerned about picking up a bottle is realistic, consider how far we’ve come. Consider as well, what the first swallow will do for us? Most likely it will get us drunk. Then we’ll have all that shame and guilt to go through all over again. We don’t need that, and as the saying goes, let’s not go there!
Being unable to attend a meeting is a good time to apply the skills and lessons we’ve learned in meetings. If we start feeling anxious we can call a friend. Even if our friend isn’t in the program, just the act of reaching out can help us to calm down. It can provide a well-needed distraction, too. Not that we need to compare, but the friend we call may they have a crisis far greater than ours on their hands. We could be a good listener for them.
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) has e-AA Group. On this website people in AA discuss their views on a variety of topics having to do with recovery and staying sober. There are many resources to help us continue with our recovery in a healthy, realistic and positive manner. The most important resources is the commitment we make to ourselves.
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