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Grapevine : December 2011
28 December 2011 A t this moment, 32 years sober, I feel thatIamoneof the most fortunate members of AA. I buried two daughters in a period of nine months as a result of auto accidents. Honour and Erin, capable, redheaded young women, never reached the age of 23. I am not unique; I know other members have lost children and gone on. I survived a stroke that paralyzed my left side, and I was able to learn everything again—walking, eating, driving, and most important, how to pray and be grateful. Dr. Paul was not out of his tree when he wrote in his story in the Big Book, “Nothing happens in God’s world by mistake.” The night Erin died Ihurtso;IknewImust make a meeting. Another member was there crying. When I shared my loss I learned that he also had lost his daughter that very day. He and his wife were away from home when they got the news. His wife stayed at the motel, and he came to a meeting. God showed us we could carry the message; we were not being punished. I was put in the right place, not by accident, but to share my feelings with another suffering alcoholic. I knew that crying would not change the reality of that day. The light of wisdom that comes from working the program showed me that crying changes nothing. I knew I belonged in meet- ings, turning my life over, expressing my anger and sharing with other alco- holics. I probably owed my daughter amends I would never be able to make. Through prayer and meditation I would have a chance to remain sane and regain purpose. Only by action in the Steps and the divine magic of one alcoholic talking with another alcoholic could I find the relief that is called serenity. Seventy plus years old, the program still has the power to answer all our problems. A drunk fell off a cliff and grabbed a bush and asked God to save him, promising God that he would change. God said, “Yes, now let go of the bush.” The drunk asked if there was anyone else who could help him. That’s the deal. God can help if we have the faith to turn it over; nothing but that. Let it go no matter how scary. Faith and nothing but. Pat L. Astoria, Ore. The hopeful side of grief By sharing his sorrow a member helps others Steps STEP TWELVE: Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs. GRAPE_28-29.indd 28 10/28/11 2:23 PM