Tonight and tomorrow I will be finishing up my 4th Step. I have worked on this Step between shifts and sleeping for the past month and a half, and I would be lying if I did not say I will be glad when I am finished. The unexamined life is not worth living, someone once said, and I am usually inclined to agree. But at the moment I have battle fatigue from hiking and fighting the snarls in my own mind and past.
What has been helpful throughout this process is knowing that I am treading a path that has worked for many others, and that I do not walk this path alone. This has been extremely important and invaluable in giving me the courage to persist in the process. Also throughout this process I have been constantly remembering the words of the Serenity Prayer. There is a hell of alot that I cannot change. What I have been butting my head against for years is that for most of my life I have tried to change things that were not in my power to change, or simply were not my business to change. I won't lie and say that I have cured myself of this fruitless behavior, but I will say that I am doing it less and less. Progress, not perfection.
Also I have been thinking about the concept of forgiveness quite a bit during this process. I am finding it easier to forgive others. Now for the really hard part - forgiving myself.
I am not an alcoholic, and up until I starting trying to work the Steps in earnest I was judgmental and cold when I considered where others are coming from in life. This is changing too. And in this I am finding I can learn from and be amazed by the most interesting and diverse people. I give people a chance more. This has been extremely rewarding.
Thanks for listening/reading. I will finish tonight or in the morning, and am looking for someone to share my 5th Step with, because my sponsor says she will not be available for another week or so to talk to me about this. Have a happy, peaceful and serene Memorial Day weekend!