Gratitude – July 20


help each other

Last night our friends who recently relapsed came over for dinner.  They have a few days of new sobriety under their belts and we thought that it might be nice for them to get out of the house and away from the guilt and shame they were feeling.  We spent several hours talking about alcoholism, recovery, our personal stories, relapse, AA…the list goes on.  It was a wonderful evening, I am so glad that they accepted our offer to come visit with us.  They shared with us what feelings and events lead them back to drinking, and the consequences that resulted.  We shared with them our own tales of relapse and of cleaning up the wreckage.  We talked and laughed, as only we alcoholics do, about things that I know would completely horrify the ‘normies’ out there.  Even after being in recovery for a few years, it still blows me away how quickly people trying to accomplish the same thing – sobriety – can become completely comfortable talking about very intimate things.  We alcoholics bond quickly, I think, because we all share the experience of having lived in the hell that is active alcoholism.  It is not a nice place, even just to visit, and I think that talking about it with others like ourselves helps keep us from going back there.

After our friends left last night, I was thinking a lot about how lucky I was to have spent the evening with them.  I am filled with gratitude that they both opened up to us, shared their feelings and their fears.  I am thankful that I was able to offer my own stories and that helped  put them at ease.  I am also grateful that all of us were able to be completely comfortable being vulnerable with one another.  These days I think that is a beautiful, but rare, thing.

I got a voicemail today from the wife thanking us and saying that it really helped them.  That’s so awesome.  What I don’t know is if they left here knowing how much they helped us.  I’ve written before about keeping it green and remembering my last drunk, but I don’t think that anything helps more than talking to other alcoholics.  That’s why I blog, that’s why I go to meetings, that’s why I have a sponsor and that’s why I sponsor others.  Together with other alcoholics, we can accomplish the very thing that we could never do alone.  For that, I am grateful.



6 thoughts on “Gratitude – July 20

  1. I am grateful for your blog.
    I am grateful to read about a sober person (you)being present and without passing judgement on other alcoholics (your friends).
    Since I’ve subscribed to your blog, I have also relapsed. I don’t dare return to my home meetings as I felt so much judgement from other members towards active users that I cannot stomach facing that judgement, as my shame is enough to endure. I know this isn’t the point of AA, that it’s about fellowship with others, but I am still reminded of the scuttlebut I would hear about others, during my short termed sobriety, that I feel I would somehow contaminate the group.
    I enjoy your writings.

    1. Thank you so much Susan. I know exactly how you feel. I have heard some talk of others relapsing at my own home group (which I love regardless), and the comments aren’t always nice – I’ve written about it a couple of times here on my blog. The thing I try to remember is that an entire room full of alcoholics isn’t ever going to be the picture of mental health. 😉 You have to take the bad with the good, but there is a whole lot of good. And if you go back to your home group and don’t get the support you need, find another home group. I did that very thing after I relapsed early on. The last time I relapsed, almost 20 months ago, I went back to my “new” home group and was welcomed back with open arms.
      Please know that you will not contaminate the group…they need you as much as you need them!
      Please keep in touch and let me know how it goes. You can always email me at
      Hugs to you,

  2. Sounds wonderful. It’s amazing how doing something like that benefits both parties, eh? I was talking to a dude on the phone last night, he of 30+ years sober, and we both walked away from the conversation feeling better. I know because we even said so to each other while we were talking…lol. But I can only imagine how your friends must have felt to feel comfortable enough to open up to the two of you and talk openly about themselves. It’s a tough thing, and yet we *are* pretty open to each other, aren’t we. Strange how that works 😉

    Thanks for this, Jami. Love reading your grat days!


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