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Embracing the Spirit
By an anonymous addict

I was thinking about what the spirit of recovery means to me, and what I have discovered is that it changes from day to day, mostly with my state of mind, but also with my spiritual condition. I do not believe that my thinking is the same as my spiritual intuition, but I do believe that my thinking can influence how I feel spiritually.

When I got clean, I ran as hard as I could from myself, from you, and from my Higher Power. Spirituality was for monks and priests and those guys with 20 years clean, but not for me. I paid lip service to having a God of my understanding, and often joked about it- calling him the "Big Cheese", and laughing like it was funny or something. The truth of the matter was that I was afraid to turn control of my life over to something I couldn't see, or hear, or touch, etc. My fear drove me to the point of insanity with service work, meetings (I knew it all) and in my personal relationships. I had to be right, and to hear another addict describe it, I wanted to represent the WSC to God. I really thought I was the shit- the one with all the answers, and knew all there was to know about NA and how we are supposed to work. The insanity of this is that there was no honesty in this- I went from self- centered fear directly into ego-driven superiority, without any in-between.

My life simply became unmanageable, and there was another opening in the armor, as happens at that point of desperation. All those things I did while supposedly serving the addict still suffering were full of self-will, and that behavior drove me to the point of looking at my life, and seeing that they didn't work anymore. Just like the drugs didn't work, the substitution of control and manipulation inside the rooms of NA didn't work either.

So, I surrendered.

I surrendered to the Program of Narcotics Anonymous. I surrendered my life over to the God of my understanding. I surrendered my beliefs, my need to be right, my fears, and my grandiose notions. And that's when the spirit came alive. The light started to shine- the sun came out, and after three and a half years of clean time, I really finally began to recover. In the time since this has happened, wonderful things have happened in my life. I no longer feel like I have to protect the fellowship from itself, but rather that I am protecting myself from the insanity of that idea. I am able to let go more readily and with less pain than ever before- and I also am able to "float" through the day with only intuition guiding me to where I need to be. Just being able to do that alone is a miracle to me.20

Embrace the spirit of recovery, hold on to it, share it with others, and believe that it is where the true joy of this experience comes from. We all only have this moment.


An addict from North Carolina

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