I always find it amusing how I thought I knew everything about everything when I first come into the 12 step program. You see, I was always that “professional patient” in every treatment center that I went to - the guy with 7 days clean showing the new patients with 1 day clean how to work a program. Every treatment center has a “captain recovery” and I always filled that position. That type of attitude carried with me for the first year of my recovery. In reality I worked a great program but I just had to make sure that everybody and their mothers knew about it. My ego got even bigger when I started sponsoring guys; I wanted to be that guy that everybody turned to for help. I stopped asking for guidance and found myself going to newcomer meetings just so I can feel like the man. I lost all sense of humility.
Around that time, I also outgrew my sponsor and stopped learning from him. I didn’t see a need to utilize him anymore but on the same token I wasn’t looking for a new one. I got way to comfortable in my recovery! I slowly started becoming spiritually unfit as I wasn’t willing to make those changes. The biggest lesson that I learned through this period in my recovery is that if I’m not humble, I will get humiliated and that is exactly what happened. My support started calling me out on it. They were all telling me that I’m getting to arrogant. You know you got a problem on your hand when your friends, support system, and your boss are telling you to humble yourself.
I had to search within me and be honest with myself. After prayer, meditation, and sharing I came to a conclusion that I was being resistant to change because I was too comfortable. I realized that I needed to make some changes. I got a new sponsor and a home group as well as going to different meetings and getting new phone numbers. One of the first things my sponsor asked me is if I know what page 1 of our literature is about. I took an educated guess and said the introduction. He told me to call him so we can have a discussion about page 1. I rushed home and opened up the book and realized that the first page is blank. I immediately called him and he said to me “that’s right, that’s how much you really know – nothing! The more I started talking to him, the more I realized how sick I am and I how there is a lot of work ahead of me. He makes me see how this disease manifests itself in so many of my behaviors. He taught me the true meaning of humility. I truly believe that when I can admit that I don’t know a lot, I have more of an aptitude for learning. The longer I stay in this program the more I realize I don’t know.
By Leon K.