At first I thought this was just another trite 12-step cliché. Then life taught me differently.  Somehow, by the time I was an adult, I had come to not only expect a bit of drama or crisis in everything but to consciously or unconsciously contribute to its creation. It was what I was used to; what would I do if there wasn’t some small crisis or excitement in my life to deal with on a regular basis? How boring would that be?

Then, with early recovery, came the realization that what I’d really been doing was “drinking over the drama” rather than constructively solving anything. Had I been so hooked on adrenaline that I’d have to “come down” by drinking? Or was I just creating excuses to drink? I realized, also, that there was more to life than living in a broth of superficial drama. The 12 step program called it serenity. People start 12 step meetings by asking God for serenity. But when I was new in recovery, I didn’t know what to do with serenity when I got it….again, in comparison to what I was used to, it was “boring.” In fact,  it took me a while to determine that what I was experiencing as “boredom” was what “normal people” would consider peace of mind or serenity. Fortunately, I chose to learn to appreciate serenity rather than returning to an adrenaline-driven  self-destructive lifestyle.

Beyond that, “no big deals” took on additional meaning for me as I grew in recovery. It came to mean that no matter what, there was absolutely nothing my Higher Power and myself could not handle together. One of the 12 Step Program’s promises is “God will do for us what we cannot do for ourselves.” Once I experienced this grace (gift from God) I realized that I didn’t need to drink whenever a crisis or problem loomed. In fact, drinking or binging on food would have just made the problem worse.

I  have had the privilege of traveling to Barnes Jewish Hospital four times during these past two years; twice by ambulance and twice in the company of life-saving friends. Each time, I was admitted and told my small intestine was partially blocked and that I needed surgery to solve the problem.  I was in great pain during these episodes; I was dehydrated from continually vomiting; and I did not enjoy having medical staff start IVs  and insert a naso-gastric tube through my nose down into my stomach.

Knowing God was there with me to help me “handle it” made everything bearable.  During all four of my hospital stays, staff worked to  stabilize me so that I would be strong enough to undergo surgery, and God helped my intestinal blockage to resolve itself  so that surgery was not needed. I have learned when I need to seek and accept medical care, and I know God will do the rest.  My absolute belief in the power of God to do for me what I cannot do for myself regardless of how big and insurmountable a problem I encounter has grown out of these experiences. I now know there are “no big deals” my Higher Power and myself cannot handle.

Please comment on what the phrase “there are no big deals” means in your experience of living one day at a time. I look forward to  hearing what you have to say!

Advertisements