From the June 1994 magazine.

. . .And the Wisdom to Know the Difference

Many AA meetings today end with the Serenity Prayer, considered by some members a more inclusive choice than the traditionally Christian Lord's Prayer. Of late my mind has been particularly preoccupied with the last line of the prayer and what it ought to be telling me about some of my own attitudes.

After twenty-seven years in the program, I often find myself thinking about how it was in 1966 when the woman who answered the intergroup phone the day I called took me, two days later, to my first meeting. There were far more men in the meetings then than women, and most of us who came in were much older than today's newcomers. We had had long years of drinking ourselves down to our bottoms--wherever and whatever they were. And the slow passage into degradation, whether in our homes or apartments or in the bars or on the streets, formed a crucial part of our stories, told by speakers at all meetings to remind ourselves of where we had been as well as to help others identify.

-- Isabelle H.

New York, New York

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