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Grapevine : May 2011
in front of me so I wouldn’t get too “thirsty.” The room was alive with gay chatter, music and dancing as the wine flowed freely. I started out having a good time, but, as the evening wore on, I began to feel uncomfortable. The party was nearly over, so I figured that I’d be fine. Then, without the slightest thought, I reached for my stepdaughter’s glass of wine, who was busy talking with a friend. In an instant, I stopped, pulled my hand back and began to tremble, stunned. My first thought was, “What in the devil are you doing?” Then another line from the Big Book came to mind, about the alcoholic having no mental defense against that first drink. Our defense, the book continues, comes from a Higher Power. I began to pray, and I prayed hard. Gradually, I could feel myself calming down and we left soon after. That night in bed, I thanked God for be- ing there and keep- ing me sober. I realized that I had been so busy with family, I had forgot- ten to look up meet- ings in Sonoma. The next morning, I asked my stepson if he would help me look for meetings on the computer and we found several. I went to one that day and shared the incident from the night before with my newfound friends. Mary B. Menominee, Mich. bartending. We all know how well that one went. Within a few weeks, I had reached an even lower all-time low, finding myself in a small town bus station, homeless, unemployed, broke and wanted by the law for violating my probation. I would not and could not stop drinking. I could no longer eat, drinking from the moment I came to until the moment I passed out. I hit my knees right in the middle of that bus station, cry- ing hopelessly, begging God to help. I got into detox, then a 30-day rehab, followed by long-term treat- ment. I grew spiritually and saw glimmers of hope, truly beginning to believe I didn’t have to drink again. But, I didn’t stay in treatment. I left for a man and was immediately ar- rested for violating my probation and sentenced to nine months. The man I left treatment for, of course, deserted me as soon as he could. I started to grow again, spiritu- ally, staying sober and making life- long female friends, which I never had. I worked out endlessly and, when it came time for my release, made good choices with God’s guid- ance, returning to the town where I had been in treatment. I was given every opportunity to start a won- derful life. I grew in my sobriety and was on the right track, when I met a man in AA, the first man I had ever been with who had many years of sobri- ety. I had a year and six months. He was not abusive to me physically. aagrapevine.org 37 GRAPE_32-38.indd 37 4/5/11 4:00 PM