Last night’s meeting happened to be on Step Eight. Even though I’ve written about it 3 days in a row, there’s been one thing that I had completely forgotten about. It was brought up several times as a “must-do-first” kind of deal. And that’s put myself on the list.
Step Eight: Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
“I needed to forgive myself before I could forgive others.” This phrase garnered many nods around the room. And although that sounds easy, to me is always came off as self-indulgent hooey.
No, false brain. That’s just me wanting to suffer more. Me wanting to cling to something that makes me miserable because it’s a pain I know. And, let’s be honest, I don’t really like myself. I can forgive others, and I can ask for others’ forgiveness. That’s far enough. Whatever else can wait. I’ll put it all on my back.
Which brings me back to the whole humility thing. I scoot right past humility and rational thought and go straight to beating myself with a tire iron. Because my disease loves nothing more than watching me go from one extreme to the other. You know who else was like that? Napoleon. Hitler. Mussolini. The Red Skull. If I can’t have everything, I’ll destroy everything. If I can’t be perfect, I must be awful.
It’s my need to control that’s front and center on this one. The thought processes goes like this: Hey, I’m an alcoholic. Apparently, I’ve been too easy on myself already. What I need is a good kick in the ass. Forgive myself? I’ll do that once I feel I’ve earned it. Except I have no concept of what “earning it” is. So I just put it off and off and off until it’s assumed that conditions will never be right for me to cut myself some slack.
But it’s through forgiving myself I learn to accept myself. I’m worth forgiving. Same goes for the others.