Since I last posted, I have read and re-read what my Blogger friend Annette had said over on her blog. (Since you are the only one reading my blog thus far....I didn't think it would be necessary to add a link ;).
I felt like I had been/have been hovering around the first three steps for about a year now. Someday's I felt stuck; frozen, unable to go on or proceed further, not able to do one more damn thing to better myself or my situation. I stopped pressuring myself and figured that I would just coast for a while. Sort of see where the flow of life took me. I read my Courage to Change every single day. I go to my Tuesday night meetings, I go out for coffee with my women friends from my home group. What I wasn't doing was that Step 4 inventory book called Blueprint for Progress. I had started it, but only filled out the first 6 pages. It was not an easy thing for me to do. Not because I wasn't worthy or didn't deserve to be free of the shit that was hidden in my head. It was because I didn't feel like I could/should/would answer some of those questions. It just seemed...I don't know...hard sort of. Some of the questions just seemed unanswerable. Some of the questions on those first 6 pages were left blank. In the back of my head, I could hear a voice (who's I don't know) telling me that I needed to get back to that and finish up. I felt like that book was haunting me. I felt guilty whenever I looked at it, so I hid it under a pile of papers. I would remember it was there every once in a while and I would feel bad because I hadn't finished what I had started. I felt like my recovery was all tied up in that damn book. I felt like I hadn't gone forward, that I was still hovering on steps one, two and three continually. Until today, when I read the 12 steps to myself, in the quiet of my own living room. We read the 12 steps out loud every Tuesday night followed by the 12 traditions. Somewhere along the way they became for me something like white noise. Blah, blah, blah. I hear them being read out loud every single week but I wasn't hearing them. There wasn't any connection there for me. So you can imagine my surprise when I read them today, really read them and understood them as they pertained to me and realized that I had been, have been doing all of those steps ( and for quite a while now) with the exception of step number 8. I felt relieved! I felt like I could have jumped for joy! I wasn't stuck down there with only 1, 2 and 3 that keep me going around in circles. I was much more advanced in the program than I knew. More advanced than I even gave myself credit for. I remember someone telling me that what works for one, doesn't work for all. Take what you like and leave the rest. I think that maybe I will continue with what I am doing and skip finishing that Blueprint for Progress. Maybe I don't need to finish it. Maybe I'll be just fine with out it. Another lesson learned.