From the February 1980 magazine.

A By-product of Right Thinking

This AA found that happiness does not mean feeling high

ONE CRY kept echoing through my head: "God, is this all there is? Is this it?" Something had happened. Nothing was happening--that's what had happened. When I wasn't looking, stinking thinking had slowly crept in and was taking over. Seven months of sobriety had flown by as I sailed and floated from AA meeting to AA meeting. Suddenly, I found myself down on this hard, cold earth, and I did not like it. I found myself desperately trying other means to get back to wherever I had been for the past months; I was in hot, determined pursuit of happiness, of pleasure, of fun and excitement. I was no longer content to end the day by merely saying that I had not taken a drink or a pill and had attended a meeting. If that was life, well, I no longer wanted it.

Resorting to the extremes that an alcoholic like me normally does, I decided to end it all. I knew very well all I had to do was to stop taking my insulin and simply drink myself to death. Before commencing, I allowed as how I would give this Higher Power a chance to save me, so I just defiantly stood there demanding, "Okay, God, if You are really there, then show me some kind of sign that You want me to stick around." I waited. Not a single thing happened. I waited some more, but the only voice I heard inside me was saying, "Go ahead. If you want to drink, go ahead and drink."

-- B. M.

Goleta, California

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