It is Friday. The best night of the week. It was a good day. I got out early, and arrived at the church, with my music on Shuffle … However, I chose some vintage Duran Duran.
I cranked out set up, in time to spend time with a new man I am working with these days. Now, I get to choose who I invest in and why.
The read spoke about the fellowship, and how there is a give and take in the rooms, when we get here. In the beginning we learn how to give, by simple acts of service, Coffee and Chairs. Greeting at the door. Shaking Hands.
In the ensuing years, we begin to learn about recovery. And we also begin filling our buckets with useful information, that at some point, we will know what to do with and how to use it.
Page 164, in A Vision for You, reminds us that
Obviously, you cannot transmit something you haven’t got.
It was a very long time, until I realized that, in fact, I did have something to offer, I just needed to learn how to do that from the spiritual angle. That only took 12 years.
Read: I had to learn and know how to pray and communicate with my God.
The read also says that we should give, because it is in giving that we receive. And that we should give, without the expectation of anything in return.
I thought about this, and spoke up early in the hour.
When I do not know what to do myself, I return to the basics. I do service.
History shows me that for a long time, I gave, to people who really did not care that I was giving, because as long as I was doing the lion’s share of work, they did not have to do anything. And some of my friends told me just that. They would not show up, nor do anything to serve, because they knew that I would be there to carry the load.
Selfish and Self Centered.
At the point, post emotional breakdown, that I spoke my mind out loud, people were incensed. They had never heard me get emotional or raise my voice, in all my years of sobriety.
What I did not realize, until a long sober woman said it tonight, that I needed to choose:
Was I going to Carry the Message, or Was I going to carry an Alcoholic/Addict ?
I’ve said before that I usually never say no to my friends, nee sponsees. I will do whatever they need to be done, without complaint. That usually worked for me, until I NEEDED myself. When it came to the point that I needed from my friends, they could not comprehend that need, nor could they respond or give me what I really needed, because I was carrying them, with the unspoken expectation that My Friends Would be able to give me what I so seriously needed.
I had not realized that then, until my long sober friend said that in the meeting tonight.
I had very lax boundaries. They were porous to a fault.
And several of my friends thought nothing of barging into the private sector of my life with their self centered and selfish needs, even when I said to them that I needed a few days off to grow up and become Fifty years old.
It was obvious on my birthday that my friends did not care about boundaries.
I know today, what I need to know about boundaries.
Those who I work with where I Carry the Message, they are just fine. Those people whom I was Carrying All Along, are no longer.
Alcoholics and Addicts may be light when we pick them off the floor in early sobriety. Because they are void of life and soul, and we take them on to help build them up. But if we don’t know when to let go, and stand back and allow them to walk on their own, and we continue to carry them into sobriety, where we do all the work, they do not learn healthy boundaries, and they tend to take advantage of us.
Over time those same Light Weight Alcoholics and Addict become Very HEAVY.
I can’t carry anyone any more. I need to take care of me. I was told, by my lady friend, that I needed to step back and fill my bucket and relax, and not try so hard to do what others can do themselves.
Food for thought.