This I Believe

Rebecca - Tarzana, California
Entered on February 17, 2007
Age Group: 50 - 65

I believe in innovation. I believe in paradox. I believe in inspiration. I believe in introspection. I also believe in this: awareness, acceptance, action. If all this sounds like a bunch of 12-step slogans, well.. they are! I have been clean and sober for 14-plus years and I believe that belonging to the community of recovery saved my life- literally.

I also strongly believe that this foray into the community of recovery has helped me change my way of relating, thinking, and responding. It opened the doors to therapy, anger management, and the reality of medication for the rest of my life. If I had not walked into a 12-step meeting over 14 years ago, I believe I would have eventually died-physically or emotionally. It does not mean that I believe in everything I have found in the 12-step programs- I will always have problems with a “higher power” and have made my “higher power” the reality of life- but it gives me a place to ” hang my hat”, and I use what will be useful to me and leave the rest for others. But, most of all, what the 12-step programs introduced me to was the remarkable book ,”The Road Less Traveled” by M. Scott Peck, who died a while back. When I first opened that book, I was shocked. Even though I felt very atheistic, I was knocked off my complacency by the wisdom and insight in the book, and I have tried to live my life that way ever since. It is true- nothing will work, not therapy, not anger management, not medication, not anything, until I take the responsibility for my own life and try to find ways to change my situation or learn to deal with it. And when I do this, I am liberated. I have smashed the denial of “everything is all right” and have taken that road to self-healing.

When I am truly honest with myself, my life is healthier. Not necessairly better all the time, just-pardoxically-healthier.