Considering what a lush I was in my 20's, that's pretty amazing (I keep saying that nobody expected me to live to 30), but I've been hesitant to say that I've been "sober" that time, since I stayed "dry" largely through RAGE - not exactly the best way to live most of one's life.
As I've posted previously, I've been carrying around two A.A. coins, one for my time-without-drinking count, and one for my time-in-the-program count. When I first quit drinking, it was in the context of Northwestern's "Chemical Dependence" out-patient unit, which was 3 hours a day, five days a week, for four weeks (although I re-upped for two more). The last hour of each week was an A.A. meeting, and after a whole week of more "medical" information, all I could hear was "the God stuff", which I saw no reason to subject myself to. So, for the first 30 years of not drinking, I probably went to those six meetings, plus 2-3 others (I know I showed up at one on my 30th anniversary), before jumping in mid-July two years ago. I'm currently 700+ days into a "90 in 90", but it's been a hard road.
First of all, it probably took me 10 months of daily meetings to even begin to get a "higher power" to work with that didn't seem like total bullshit ... I mean, I could posit gravity, but figured it didn't give a rat's ass about my sanity. It also took an additional six months or so to find somebody to work with me as a "sponsor", since I was so far outside the box on specifics.
Anyway, at a meeting this evening I heard a comment about "spiritual fuel" ... which is something I'm sorely lacking. It sort of reminds me of Gurdjieff's "foods" (and how people tend to use the wrong food/fuel for various functions), and I'm looking at an empty tank on the spiritual line. It doesn't help that I don't trust any of the "popular" religions, so don't have any of the "easy refill" options that the
I take it that things would be better for me if I did have some "spiritual fuel", but after having spent the past half century in daily trench warfare with both God and Man, it's really tough for me to try to open up to anything (or not spew acidic cynicism over anything in that ballpark that I might encounter). It also reminds me of when I was a kid and being told I needed to get some "elbow grease" ... which I then wanted to know what store sold it - realizing, of course, that the person was just being an asshole criticizing the results I was getting with "non-greased" elbows. Bleh ... humans! ... can't live with 'em, and everybody gets pissed with you if you start using 'em for landfill.
Anyway, I figured I'd do a post about this so that the concept would be there for me to catch up with down the line.