After taking an honest look at myself over the last few days, I’ve found that after 7 and a half years sober, I still have a lot of growing up to do in regards to emotional sobriety, a little discussed subject in recovery.
I gently accept my humanity, with all of my strengths and weaknesses and successes and mistakes, nor am I afraid to “feel my feelings” as I was before I got sober. What I struggle with is emotionalism, much like many of us, in that my emotions, both positive and negative, can have an undue influence upon my thought and behavior. Emotions, such as love, joy, and sadness are vital, but emotions uncontrolled blur the intellect, which is vital as well. However, intellect without emotion, and vice versa, is spiritually worthless. There must be a happy medium.
What’s powerful, and hopeful, in the attached letter is that Bill W. struggled with emotional sobriety 21 years after co-founding AA. He states in his letter that it took him that long “to exert every ounce of will and action to cut off…faulty emotional dependencies upon people, upon AA, indeed, upon any set of circumstances whatsoever” to gain true dependence upon God, and God alone, in order to quit wallowing “in either elation, grandiosity or depression.” Any emotion. If the co-founder of AA struggled with complete emotional surrender to God at 21 years sober, I know that I am A-OK where I am at. Right now. In this moment.
In “How it Works”, it states that “to the extent that we… humbly rely on Him, does He enable us to match calamity with serenity.” However, I know that through: unceasingly surrendering self, and all that entails, to God, daily self-examination and meditation, and carrying the message, i.e. love, to others, wherever I may go, emotional sobriety, that is matching any emotion with serenity, is not just a possiblity; it’s a reality.