From the December 2012 magazine.

December 2012: Holiday Pity Party

Just before the holiday season, I had surgery and was on bed rest after unexpected complications. I was in a lot of physical pain and could not move around comfortably. I found myself stuck with my own thoughts. I tallied up my long list of complications and was lamenting the idea that a simple surgery had gone wrong. I was suffering, where other people who had the same surgery never had a problem. I thought I would call my sponsor, knowing that she’d listen to me bitch and moan and then set me straight. But after 23 years sober, I knew that was just a ploy for attention. I’d really just be trying to drag her into my pity party. I knew my sponsor was too savvy for that. She also didn’t deserve to have to deal with my whininess. So, as I lay in my sick bed, I was becoming filled with self-pity. I couldn’t go out and do my holiday shopping. Besides, I had no money. I just had anger and grand justifications for my state of mind.

Then I looked over and saw the card that my home group sent me, unopened on the nightstand. The Serenity Prayer was on the front. As I opened it, my negative thoughts started to evaporate. There must have been a dozen signatures and get-well-wishes inside. My mindset slowly became transformed from self-pity to gratitude. All these women, with whom I had only one thing in common—alcoholism—were thinking of me, praying for me and wishing me well. Yet I had nothing to give to them in my broke and physically ill state.

-- Terri S.

Canal Winchester, Ohio

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