6 months

This is a really nice milestone to reach. I guess it’s been a while since my last major one; in my early days of course every month was a milestone, but that passes and I think the next major one for me will be a year. It’s nice to think of it that way, really. I definitely feel as if I’ve been in the fellowship for quite a while now. In a way reaching six months is like graduating. I won’t be asked to share at the newcomers meeting any more, and next week I will be giving my first chair, meaning that I’ve definitely passed a certain point in my recovery and I am now moving onto the next stage. It’s very exciting.

This week I’ve got back to something I love: writing. In my very early sobriety I started a story about a group of young people growing up in London, but after a couple of days I left it to start another much more action-orientated story about the end of the world. That went really well for quite a while, but just before I got to the end I seemed to run out of steam, and I haven’t touched it for months. I will finish it one day, but when I’m ready. Anyway, I’ve got back to the first story this week and it’s going really well. I think I’m writing my best stuff at the moment. In my writing I’ve never tried to stray too far from stuff that I know about, which has helped. This one features alcoholism quite heavily, I have to say. I really like it.

Tonight was my home group, where I was asked to share as a newcomer for the last time. Everyone seemed to know that it was my six month anniversary, which was lovely. I managed to have some good conversations before and after the meeting, with people I knew well and some who I didn’t. My sponsor was there tonight, which was lovely because I’ve never seen him there before. Apparently it was his home group in early sobriety too, and he got sober there just as I have! We’re getting on so much better now than we did last year, it’s amazing.

At the end of the meeting I got my six month chip, and it’s a nice blue colour. And so my collection which I proudly display in my room has finally grown again. When the meeting had dispersed I walked to the bus stop with a couple of people from the fellowship who I kind of know quite well, but for some reason the conversation wasn’t flowing. They were quite close friends and I got that old feeling of not being part of the group. I knew it was in my head, but there was nothing I could do about it. I would love to have been part of the group but I’m starting to think that it’s just meant to be this way sometimes. In my share tonight I found myself saying that I’m ready to accept my shyness as a part of my being. I’ve never said that before. For months I’ve hoped that the shyness would just go away eventually, because not many other people in AA seem as shy as me. Now I’m beginning to realise that I’ve been this way since I was born, and it’s hardly likely to change just by me willing it to.

The fact is that even when I’m with close friends, I can be shy. It takes a lot for someone to become a close friend of mine; I don’t know whether that’s a good or a bad thing any more. I hate the idea that I just have to accept my quietness now. I’ve always wished to become the life and soul of the party, the type of person who can walk into a room and make friends instantly. Maybe that will never happen. Maybe it will always be hard for me to begin with in new situations. At least I know now that new and difficult situations don’t stay new and difficult forever. If I can give AA this much of a chance and stick around for six whole months, then I can give anything a chance.

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