There is an assumption made in Step Two that I didn’t realize until just now. And it’s got nothing to do with my higher power.

Step 2: came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

This program assumes I’m insane! Not necessarily Cuckoo’s Nest crazy, but still falling under some definition. Actually, a very specific definition: insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Well, and let’s be honest, if that’s the definition of insanity, what isn’t insane? Should I go down to Wrigley Field and protest the Chicago Cubs’ next season? Don’t they realize what they’ve been doing for over 100 years is insane?

Sure, left to my own devices, there was no way I was stopping the cycle of alcoholism on my own. It wasn’t even insanity anymore; over time it had become fact. I became the mentally challenged relative that kept to himself at family gatherings. I would require special consideration for my malady. People would speak in hushed tones and slowly shake their heads. Exceptions needed to be made, for which I would apologize until the people I was apologizing to stopped coming around.

Being aware of an insanity that’s eventually going to kill you is a tough way to go through the day. Let’s just say it wears on you. Then, however many years later it takes, it’s just too much. Time to look elsewhere, because looking inside wasn’t getting it done.

Now, sitting among fellow drunks that have found their way back to the mainland, I can call out my particular brand of crazy as it pertains to alcoholism and other things, and not be full of shame and regret. When others recognize their own insanities in my stories and vice-versa, there’s a lifting up and out of myself that occurs that never happened before.

Welcome to belonging.

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