Sobriety, My No. 1 Priority

After seven years of sobriety I relapsed. I called my sponsor, dreading his reaction. He was kind but very clear. One of the things he told me was to take stock of all program actions I normally practiced. Had I been practicing them? Were there some I had stopped doing or only doing occasionally? Being no stranger to OCD, I made a color-coded spreadsheet. Red meaning ‘red alert,’ orange ‘watch out’ and green ‘that’s a daily reprieve for you.’ Below are my actions, or lack thereof, in the week before my relapse.

Last month, now two years sober, my sponsor pointed out that I had slacked off again. I completed another of my color-coded reports, this time adding two new sections on lust. It looked eerily similar to the report I did after my relapse. I picture in my mind a sexaholic looking at this article and reflecting – “Great stuff, very useful, but not for me, I am colorblind.” That’s me, only I am not colorblind, but willfully blind, I can’t always see how I am doing.

The acronym S.L.I.P. stands for – “Sobriety Losing Its Priority.” This helps me remember sobriety must be my No. 1 priority. As I discovered, lust is very patient. I have only a “daily reprieve, contingent on the maintenance of my spiritual condition” (AA p.85).

Tammo D., The Netherlands

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