An oldtimer the other day said, “when you boil AA down, it’s all about growing up and becoming a responsible adult!”
How right he is!
The 12 Steps and 12 traditions say that when they conducted a study of AA personalities they learned, we were “childish, emotionally immature, and grandiose!”
Hate to say it, but that shoe fits me to a tee!
This immaturity is completely understandable. After all, why become realistic, mature, adults when I can chase windmills and believe in unicorns?
The reason is simple; the steps trick us into growing up. Step 4 & 5 are like a commercial inventory, and a “fact-finding and fact -facing process.” Knowing who we were shows the necessity for change. Step 9 and the principals of the program provide a roadmap of what we need to do different and where to go to be at peace.
Accepting responsibility, that most adult of behaviors, is at sobrieties’ core. Individually we must shoulder the responsibility for working the program ourselves. We can’t expect someone to do it or want it more than we do.
Picking up the phone, going to meetings, being of service, and working with others is all part of our responsibility in living sober. So too is getting a job, showing up, and living within our means. This whole package is what it’s like to be a sober adult.
Ironically when we appropriately shoulder these responsibilities, we find they get easier, and a desire to take on more becomes automatic.
Growing up and become an adult seems daunting when we are new and weighted down with problems. Working the steps one day at the time, suddenly one day we realize we are all grown up – often in spite of ourselves!