The head said, “Run back in the house!”
The program of recovery said, “Just because your head is attached to your body doesn’t make it your friend.”
Dead stuff as tall as my head.
Weeds up to my knees.
To top it off, a gopher had found my garden and had begun to kill my prize hollyhocks.
I feared the problem was larger than I am. FEAR= F Everything And Run. Or Face Everything And Recover.
The Alcoholic Anonymous Big Book says the main problem for the alcoholic centers in the mind (page 23). A vital spiritual experience changes things, and “Ideas, emotions, and attitudes which were once the guiding forces of these men are suddenly cast to one side, and a completely new set of conceptions and motives begin to dominate them” (page 27).
I know I’ve had spiritual awakening as the result of taking the 12 Steps.
So I had a spiritual experience in the big ugly garden. I stood there with gardening gloves and pruning shears, wanting to run but didn’t.
In Appendix II of the Big Book, William James is quoted as saying there’s an “educational variety” of spiritual experience that develops slowly over time. But still it results in a “profound alteration in [my] reaction to life” that wasn’t brought about by myself alone.
My life has been like a garden run amok, and I wound up in a big ugly mess that landed in the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous. Slowly, one small section at a time, the Master Gardener worked on me.
I had a profound alteration in my reaction to life in that garden. It became important to just make a beginning, take the first step, worry about the next one later. Once I was committed, I started seeing things differently.
I saw this.
And I saw this.
And the work gradually got done. Not all of it. Not even most of it. But a beginning was made, and I’m free of the bondage of despair. Maybe I’ll even get that gopher.
Update, Sunday afternoon: Gopher, 1 --- Chris, 0