The Keystone

The Keystone 3-14-2014

He is the Father, and we are His children. Most good ideas are simple, and this concept was the keystone of the new and triumphant arch through which we passed to freedom.


A keystone is the wedge-shaped piece at the highest part of an arch that locks the other pieces in place. The “other pieces” are Steps One, Two, and Four through Twelve. In one sense this sounds like Step Three is the most important Step, that the other eleven depend on the third for support. In reality however, Step Three is just one of twelve. It is the keystone, but without eleven other stones to build the base and arms, keystone or not, there will be no arch. Through daily working of all Twelve Steps, I find that triumphant arch waiting for me to pass through to another day of freedom.

From the book Daily Reflections

© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Facing your past

Everyone has a past. Most of us dont like to deal with our past unless we are forced to deal with it.  I’m no angel by any means but I’m grateful I have dealt with my past and was given the tools to move on.  I have found by dealing with my emotional, physical, sexual, and mental abuse in the past I was able to understand and forgive. Compassion is all I have now and I feel sorry for those who refuse to deal with the truth because they will never know that new freedom and happiness that comes with learning about yourself and dealing with life through new eye’s. My whole outlook on life has changed from me being able to look at how I was dealing with people, places, and situations and I was able to learn how to deal with them in a different way. Today I have peace and serenity because I use the 12 step program to deal with every situation that may sneak up on me and I look for change in my life. Before cleaning my own house I was miserable and constantly living off of someone else’s misery. I think of all the time I lost by taking others inventory and not staying focused on myself and working on making a better me. I have nothing but love and compassion now for myself and others. As long as I can keep learning to forgive myself I’m always changing. Trust God, Clean house and help others.

Page 164 of The Big Book

Abandon yourself to God as you understand God.

Admit your faults to Him and to your fellows.

Clear away the wreckage of your past.

Give freely of what you find and join us.

We shall be with you in the Fellowship of the Spirit, and you will surely meet some of us as you trudge the Road of Happy Destiny.

May God bless you and keep you – until then.

Glory Judging

I have found that some people around the tables no matter how much they go to meetings or how much they know the 12 steps and 12 traditions they want their glory of being right. I call this sicker then others. No knowledge what so ever can change me but taking action on myself and accepting people for who they are and what they believe helps me to develop a better relationship with those people. Last week I had an experience with an elder gentleman at a meeting that just insisted on interrupting the meeting and wanting to talk about the group and it’s finances, and other negative problems. I’m not the type to keep my mouth shut so I interrupted him and told him that none of what he was speaking of had anything to do with the meeting itself and that if he wanted to discuss it we could sit down and talk about it after the meeting. So then after the meeting I sit down with this man and he is making all kinds of false accusations about this group and saying that he was a group member. I said “Really? Because you must be the only group member”. This group had been taken over by new comers back in 2011 from Bridgeway that did not follow any steps or traditions and then just recently walked away with everything. Now before anyone gets upset, this sometimes happens when you don’t have a good foundation.

I proceeded to listen to the gentleman and he just kept complaining about how he did not think he should have to get his paper signed and he didn’t understand why he had to go to certain meetings that lasted an hour and 1/2 while people took a smoke break and he felt that he should be able to leave early. I replied that he needed to speak to his sponsor about this situation and he replied that he had no sponsor. I was done. You cant get anywhere with someone that does glory judging.

Glory Judging is a sickness. My definition of Glory Judging is when you want to focus on what everyone else is doing and you want to bring it into a negative light so that it makes you look better.

I was once like him and ran my mouth 1 too many times in a meeting and was asked to shut up. I thought I had all the answers and my knowledge was so important that I had to share it in a group of 50 people or more. Well I learned my lesson that day. I got my feelings hurt because I was asked to shut up, I felt sorry for myself, and I was humiliated in from of everyone. Let me say that being asked to be quiet was not done in a rude way, they where very kind about it but my idea was that I knew all and needed to share all. I learned a lesson that day, Keep quiet and listen, I might just learn something.

Then we have the Glory Judging by those who say, “Well at least I didn’t do that”. Well just because you didn’t get caught does not mean you did not do it. We have all made mistakes and when we get into the cliches of Glory Judging and surrounding ourselves with negative behavior we are continuing to feed our disease. Know one and I mean Know one is free of this character defect but once acknowledged it can be dealt with. Such as Step 4 brings us to most of our defects. I continue to make a list of my defects on a daily basis as I need to focus on myself and my inventory to make sure I’m not Glory Judging anyone or anything. There is a difference in talking to my sobriety sisters and sponsor to get another opinion of my thinking.

Life on Life’s Terms

I’m done trying to run the show in my life and spending time trying to control people, places, and situations in my life today. I think this was the most freeing experience I have had in my life when I gave up the control. It consumed my life in a negative way and I ran rapid trying tell everyone what they need to do or say. This New Freedom (Which is in “The Promises” in The Big Book on page 83-84) and New Happiness is something I will never forget. I’m no longer spending my time trying to run the show and in a negative way at that.

I had so many excuses for everything and nothing was my fault. You could not get me to own anything because I lived in denial and did not want to face the truth and deal with me. It was easier to blame someone else for my problems instead of looking at myself and changing my actions. Of course I had to do some really deep soul searching and have a Spiritual Experience that came after working the steps but I would have never thought in a million years if you would have told me I could have this peace and serenity I would have not believed it.

It’s not about my past today, I have owned that past and dealt with it, it’s about what I can do today for the next person that suffers and I choose to throw myself into action today. Not action that benefits me because that would be self centered but action that helps another person that suffers. I heard a speaker last night explain The Promises and he hit it head on. He said, “Think of The Promises such as you would think of a warranty on a new car.” If you follow The Promises it is like your warranty in life. So if I continue to work the 12 steps I will continue to benefit from The Promises. This does not mean my life will be perfect and I will be surrounded by butterflies and unicorns, but I will learn how to deal with situations that use to baffle me and my whole attitude and outlook on life will change.

Today my life is not perfect, but I can accept it for who I’ am today and I’m not running around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to cover my tracks because I did something wrong. If I keep doing what I’m doing I will keep getting what I get. I don’t want to live in worry, fear, guilt, shame and remorse today. Today I choose to be happy and work The 12 Steps and call my sponsor and surround myself with people who are doing the same.

*Life is so much better and peaceful today because of the actions I choose to take one day at a time.

I’m grateful today that I can only be honest.

My conversation with Dad

It has been 2 years since I have spoken to my father and he called the other day. He is almost 70 years old and I asked him how he was doing and dont it get lonely living alone. I’m a little concerned about him as he lives in GA. and I live in MO. so if anything happened to him I would never know. Any way just a brief but conscious moment I would like to share but first let me give you some insight.

My father left my mother at a young age. They both had their problems and I believe that they were both at fault. To this day my mother will talk about my father beating her, beating us children as if it happened yesterday. Just a quick note for all you parents, if you are going to do this to your children and make a decision to bad mouth and bash the other parent I can guarantee that this kind of behavior will back fire on you, as it did my mother. She speaks of all kinds of bad things, not just my father, she speaks about everyone and how they have done wrong like she has never made a mistake in her life. I just want to say this and then I’m moving on…”Just because you didn’t get caught does not mean you didn’t do it”.

So yes, the 4 of us children grew up without our father for many years. That did not mean we did not have many men in and out of our lives. Terrible men sometimes.

When I finally was able to contact my father at the age of 15 that is when I started to have a relationship with him. My dad had shown me another side of life. A loving and caring home with stability and goals. Not to say we did not have our problems but they were nothing different then a teenage daughter would have with their own father. He was the only man in my life that never molested me, raped me, or wanted sex from me a s a child.

Many years ago I was able to forgive my father for the abandonment issue’s I did have because he owned his part and apologized for anything and everything that ever happened to me as a child. Now this I found was a very powerful step in my life because my mother continues to deny, deny, deny. Lord knows she tried her best but The Lord is the only one who will know since I will never know my mother as my mom but only as My Abuser, My enemy, and everything I never want to be in my life.

Back to Dad. We spoke for a couple of hours and he proceeded to tell me how he visited one of my abusers in the hospital and told him he better pray to God for forgiveness. For me this was another step and process I’m still taking in as I’m not use to my father doing what a man should do when things like abuse and rape happens to their daughter.

He went on to proceed that he was sorry again for anything that had happened to me and that he regrets not being there for us kids. Then he stepped in and said….”If I have ever got drunk and tried anything on you I’m sorry”…..WHAT? Immediate emotions of so many feelings I thought I never had. Compassion comes at moments you never expected.

I broke down with tears in my eyes and I couldn’t speak, I cried and was trying to clear my throat and said to him, “No DAD” You never did anything like that to me.

My father was the only man who never tried to rape me, or molest me but he wanted me to know “I’m Sorry”. I just felt like he was trying to take any pain away I may have. I just want to say it takes a Big Man to admit his faults and stay humble in the moment, never showing any pride but pure humility.

I cried all night that night after I got off the phone with him and I truly believe that God only gives us what we can handle and that night God gave me a Spiritual Awakening. Something I will never be able to put into words but an inner peace within my heart and mind.

It states in the Big Book that “More will be revealed” and just when I thought nothing else could come my way, more is revealed.

So wit this I say to all of my fellow friends of Bill W. “Don’t quiet 5 minutes before the miracle”. And dont forget, just because you have worked the steps have you truly cleaned house and worked on your past and all that can not be fixed around the tables. Clear ALL of your wreckage even if it hurts, I promise you it does get better.

My name is Mary and I’m Truly a Grateful Alcoholic.

NOTE: For any women/men who have struggled in the past with Abuse, molestation, rape and so on please contact a counselor or a therapist near you and if you dont know who to contact in your area please contact me and I will help you find someone.

I truly believed that I had all of the abuse/rape/molestation behind me and I didn’t.
There is still that small child that I would always put away in a room that I’m still dealing with but today she is not hiding, she is right now, right hear speaking to you, and no longer a victim but a survivor.

Until I dealt with my past thoroughly (step 4) I was unable to fully work the steps.

God Speed my Sisters and Brothers