by Jeffrey I
One of the gifts of sobriety is handling life when it throws you a curve ball and last year it sure did. Thank God I have a program. I was sentenced to 18 months in prison with a year of sobriety to clear the wreckage of my past. I am currently in the process of making my amends to the State of Florida.
You know it’s funny, when the old timers in the rooms tell you that because you get sober, life doesn’t always get easier, IT’S TRUE!!
My journey began at Turning Point of Tampa in February 2021. TPOT gave me a firm foundation to start my sobriety. I entered the rooms and finished the steps and waited for the miracle to happen and IT DID!! Life got amazing after that. Let me tell you, the gifts of sobriety are real. I continued to do the things my sponsor told me to do, and I went to meetings.
In March of 2022, I turned myself in to the Department of Corrections, with my family, my sponsor, my partner, and my AA family by my side to support me. I can honestly say that if I wasn’t sober and working a program, I wouldn’t have been able to traverse this whole process with grace. My program prepared me to accept life on life’s terms.
The Big Book tells us we suffer from a spiritual malady. We have a God sized hole and we attempt to fill it with anything but God. Now that I am recovery, I work as a vessel for God, as I understand him, to do his work through me. Life is completely different, and I have been able to get through the time in prison with only two months remaining. During this time, there have been several times my higher power and my program saved the day. I am so grateful to AA for the meetings brought into prison and the support network that has carried me through this whole process.
You know, I have always said that God didn’t abandon me, I abandoned him, and he has been with me through everything. I have been able to complete the steps again with my sponsor while behind bars. This program is contagious, and people want to know why and how I can have an attitude of gratitude through everything. People recognize that there is something different about me, an inner peace.
All in all, even behind bars, I am living a life better than my wildest dreams. I never thought it would be possible, but here I am living it. I owe so much of my new life to the 12 Steps, and I will show up for this program the way it continues to show up for me.
Listen to the people who came before you, do this program with fervor and tenacity, and don’t give up until the miracle happens.