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The Christmas list for next year has already been written up. As a middle-aged dad, the gift-receiving season involves a fair amount of T-shirts, boxers and socks. It’s more about getting things I need rather than things I want. Couldn’t the same be said for maintaining my sobriety?

Step 7: humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Sure, my daughter, niece and nephews screw up their faces in dissatisfaction when they survey my holiday booty. I’m slowly building a pile of utilitarian clothing, and I’m more than happy for it. This is taking care of my basic needs. My current socks have holes or have gone M.I.A., the T-shirts are yellowing, and the boxers have rips and tears.

In my drinking years, these signs of deterioration would go overlooked or unchecked in favor of maintaining my wants. All extra money, time and attention went toward completing my rather short wish list: alcohol, free time, and isolation. Without much effort, everyday became a celebration of one. Everyday could be like Christmas. Take that, Elvis.

But like any child, I quickly became bored once the wrapping was off. Was I sure this was what I asked for? Of course not. Who wants addictions over which they’re powerless? Maybe they’re out there, but I’ve personally yet to meet someone thankful for their inability to stop drinking.

For me, I’ve got far more than I could ask for. The gratitude list runneth over. What the program has shown me is that I receive far greater gifts through the removal of shortcomings rather than the accumulation of character defects. I’ll worry about my ability to enjoy later. Right now I’m elated that I’m not constantly tearing things down.

One thought on “lumps.

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