by Marcello C-B

“Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.”

My experience after completing step 12 brought out a spiritual experience of unimaginable gratitude for this program. It brought me out of the darkness of self-destruction, where I thought that I would never be able to climb out of. My path to becoming more spiritual started back in 1998 when I went to Alcoholic Anonymous meetings with my mother. Unfortunately I went to the “outside meeting” and had less than a little care for the real meeting happening inside. I just didn’t care. I wasn’t ready to give up the world of bad behavior since I was still in mid-flight.

I used to think God didn’t love me because he didn’t help me stop drinking and using

Later I thought to myself, how can I have what my mother and uncle have? I wondered many times how to get the courage to stop using. I thought God doesn’t love me enough, because he doesn’t help me to stop using. So believing in God and having spirituality in my life I didn’t know how to differentiate them till I started to work the steps. I thought that being Catholic and believing in God was enough. Then I started to work the twelve steps with my sponsor.

At that time I was unable to feel any type of emotion. My life was chaotic and undisciplined where I thought that my life was going nowhere but on a one way ticket to hell in a hand basket, in all honesty I thought I’d finally made it, but boy was I so wrong. It wasn’t until I started to work on step 1 that I realized the doors that were shut slowly opened up again. I started to get some hope in my life. I started to understand one step after the other. My spirituality started to evolved, little by little.

I was still in mid-flight

With step 2 my sanity started to come back. I left the insanity behind. When I put my will and my life into the care of the God of my understanding, things started to come easier. With step 4 I really opened up by putting pen to paper and realized how spiritually bankrupt I was. I had no morals whatsoever. Soon after I presented myself verbally to God and to my sponsor as I let them both know all about it in my 5th step. Step 6 began the constant practice of releasing my defects of character. I still practice, but like all things it’s easier said than done. Unlearning old behavior is coming along. I pray to my higher power to remove my shortcomings. With step 8 I’ve continued to do some much-needed housecleaning. I do the best I can day by day.

Now it almost feels like it’s my birthday every day

I’ve been able to make direct amends to those I could without causing harm when the opportunity presented itself. I continue to do a personal inventory of things as I need to, so I can better myself. I mainly use prayer for other people. The only time I use prayer for myself is when I leave my place and ask my higher power to guide me outside so I can have better judgment on the road that awaits me.

Step 12 is more of an action step for me. Once I completed the steps, my sponsor told me I was ready to pass down this knowledge to a newcomer. It’s the only way I can truly keep what I have. The spiritual awakening started for me during the first steps of this program, and what a great journey it has been. The work continues to bear fruit. It almost feels like it’s my birthday every day. In a way it is and that’s how I feel. Now, I’m not saying I don’t have bad days, because I do. But for the most part I’m a happy camper now my family is back, I have a job, and I just purchased a vehicle. I’m 14 months and 14 days clean and sober. I ain’t looking back but I don’t get comfortable either because I am also a slip away from the chaos. I stay in contact with my sponsor and fellow alcoholics and addicts in my circle today. Without them, I can’t do this program. I stay connected so I don’t get infected.

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