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Grapevine : July 2011
a DUI ... unmanageability was apparent to everyone but me. I started hanging around people that made Charles Manson look like a sweetie. Finally, at 27, a boyfriend from my past came back into my life and tragedy hit: A murder in my own home. I wasn't there that night. I was o drunk, cheating on the boyfriend, but my lifestyle was suspicious enough to make the cops raise an eyebrow. I walked into the police station wearing a motorcycle shirt and a skull belt buckle and walked out a suspect. I was arrested and con- victed, I believe, on my lifestyle. I am currently serving a life sentence. I've managed to main- tain sobriety here with the AA program, a wonderful sponsor and the 12 Steps. I know I am innocent and will walk free one day a complete person. If I hadn't come to prison, I would never have gotten sober. Jails, institutions and death ... look how close I came. What can I say to help others avoid a situation like mine? e only thing I can think of is what my momma used to say: "Don't ever think you're smarter than Alcohol." Kimberly L. Chowchilla, Calif. beginning to feel accepted. At a meeting, a man said he recognized me. He also said that he knew the man I had killed. Immedi- ately, my reaction was to get up from my chair and escape. Tears blurred my vision. As I rushed to the door, this man stopped me and hugged me, saying that my victim used to sit among these tables and was sure my victim would have wanted me to stay and continue coming to AA. Wow. Talk about acceptance. I have been sober since July 2, 2007, through many difficult times, to say the least. I admitted my guilt driving drunk, that I caused death and injury. I also reorganized my life in the face of an upcoming sentence, divorced my husband, sold all my property, trained someone to take over a job I held for over 20 years, let go of friends, packed away all my personal belongings, said goodbye to my children and left to serve 15 years in prison with a ten year extended supervision sentence. I attend AA meetings in prison. AA brought me back to God and, with God and AA's support, I am still so- ber, still sharing with other alcohol- ics my sorrow, hopes and dreams. It has been a blessing for me to be able to share my experience with you. Sheila B. Taycheedah, Wis. I know I ... will walk free one day a complete person. If I hadn't come to prison, I would never have gotten sober. aagrapevine.org 17