I celebrated my 6 years of sobriety in January. I had first gotten sober in 1988 but never cracked a big book and drank after almost 20 years. I was restless irritable and discontent most of those years. I was doing then what I now call a thin air program. Basically, I was pulling stuff out of thin air and hoping that would work. I was more interested in looking and sounding good in a meeting then helping a new comer.
Like most people, I had been given a 12x12 and was told to do the steps by it. I really didn't know better. At all of the meetings I went to they would read chapter 5, How it Works, and that is where I would always start in the big book to read... at chapter 5.
When I came back to the program with my ass in my hands and heard the same old stuff, I knew I needed to do things differently. I could not find a sponsor that did the steps from the book. I don't know if I should laugh or cry about that.
If it was not for the Internet, I may have never found the BBA. I got on fire with it and devoured the big book as if I were starving.
I am considered a big book thumper and I am not the popular AA member I was years ago. I was once told to shut up about that stupid book in a meeting and most of the other women don't talk to me. At open meetings, if I quote the big book I don't let people know that it is from the big book because I have had so much negative comments.
My home group is small and there are a few members with over 30 years sober who seem to be on that thin air program. One of them recently shared in a meeting that he does not listen to a thing that somebody with less than 10 years has to say. There are other meetings around but mostly the same type of atmosphere and prejudice against the big book. I take this to prayer and meditation a lot and I have been going to mostly just Big Book meetings.
I lead a Big Book meeting on Monday night and there are 4 of us on a regular basis. They are all men. The 2 women stopped coming last week. One of these days I am hoping to have at least one BBA meeting here. Thanks to Dan for putting it all down in writing and getting me in touch with Tyla a few years ago and thanks to Tyla for putting me in touch with Carla who has guided me through the steps. I'm so grateful. I love the BBA and the big book and I don't apologize for that to anybody. I cannot be sustained on thin air.
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