04 February 2014

Keep Calm and 12-STEP On

POST EDIT: I am currently not reading other WoPA blogs for reasons I'll have to explain later.  But it came to my attention that the 12 steps have been a theme of late in the WoPA blog world.  I just want to be absolutely clear that this post was written with COMPLETE unawareness of this theme.  It is just what happened (seemingly randomly) in my life lately.  Anyway- just another disclaimer. 

My old sponsor that I shared my Step 4 with a long time ago texted me a couple weeks ago and asked if we could get together.  I didn’t think much of it, and invited her over.  I hadn’t seen in her in months, my group meeting attendance has waned big time and it seems like the times I go she isn’t there either.  So she came, and we talked for three hours. It was really nice, she lives and breathes recovery and vulnerability. She is honest and wise.  She asked me about how my recovery work was going and I said that I felt like I’d made good progress but I’d stalled out at Step 8/9 and never “finished” the 12 steps.  She encouraged me to get back to it and talked me through some fears and excuses. 

I still didn’t really think a lot of it. But the next morning I was dealing with some hard feelings related to something else, and all of the sudden all my recovery awareness and steps came flooding back to me.  And it felt both familiar and peaceful, and a little nagging at the same time.  The 12 steps have done so much for me, and I’ve let them slip out of my life.  Self-awareness is really hard and painful, but it is also the absolute key to my inner peace and self-confidence.  Self-awareness is like a window into grace and the doorway to a clear conscience.  Taking responsibility for the way I contribute to any misery and frustration in my life is the best way for me to get out from under said frustration.  Own my stuff, surrender the rest.  Relinquish my efforts to control outcomes and perceptions, let go of pride and love people. 

I had a good talk with my therapist about the ways I try to control things in my life and he gave me some good insights.  Sometimes it’s easier to forget my codependency, to live in everyone else’s behaviors and victimize or criticize.  But it’s the way I used to live and I don’t want to be that person anymore. 

It’s always been easy for me to be complacent when Pete is doing well.  But I feel like I've made progress surrendering him to God.  But there are dozens of other relationships in my life that would benefit from the kind of acceptance and recovery that I’ve worked so hard to apply to my marriage.  

Here I go again.  


  1. I can relate to this so much. A few months ago, my hubby's recovery was going so well, I took it for granted. Than, I noticed some of my old flaws starting to pop up. I also noticed, I was becoming a bit judgey about my hubby's progress and the slogan, "You Spot It, You Got It" occurred to me. I knew it was time to dive back into recovery work. I'd been doing my readings, blogging and seeing my counselor but not anything tangible. I need tangible for it to really work for me. So, I began my 12 steps again. I feel sooo much better!! Wishing you all the best!

    1. Thank you Elsie- I love that saying "You spot it- you got it" I need to remember it more because I'm so good at spotting. :)

  2. I am struggling now with wopa blogs. I love yours. There are a couple of others that I love as well. But why the heck does there have to be such division over the 12 steps? They are so misunderstood. It irritates me.

    1. I loved all the different takes on 12 steps going on right now -- I love hearing people's own experiences and how they brought them to where they are. I love hearing what is working for people, and how their discoveries of what wasn't working for them spurred them on to new answers to prayers. My hope for each WoPA is a path illuminated for her by God, no matter where it takes her.

      Jane, I love your insights, and how well you share them with all of us, 'cause it helps me stay more real with myself and hold myself up to a higher standard. Hugs!

  3. Really nice blog. Happy I found it.