Sunday, August 5, 2012

It's a Wonderful Life

I have to take a little break from “what I was like” tonight. See, I'm exhausted. But it's the beautiful kind of exhausted that comes from having a full and wonderful life. So, I just want to write a little bit about this weekend and how my life is wonderful.

I thought when I got sober that my life would be wonderful when I was making 100K a year, driving a brand-new car and traveling to Europe and Australia every year. None of that has happened. And depending on how long I live and what the universe has planned for me, most of that will probably never happen (although I wouldn't mind a new car that isn't always threatening to come apart on the freeway). And if it does, I'm not it will have that big an impact on the wonderfulness of my existence.

The things that bring me joy today cost next to nothing. Yesterday afternoon when I got done writing Schmoopie, I decided to give my old sponsor who lives on the east coast (I actually call him my sponsor emeritus because I still bring him all my crazy and he still helps me sort it all out) just to say hi and see how he was doing. As soon as he answered the phone, he said, “Girl, I was just getting ready to call you. What are you doing for breakfast tomorrow?”

He was in town for a friend's 50th birthday party. So, out of nowhere, I got to spend this morning with one of the most important people in my life. And it was a complete surprise for me. I thought about him and he appeared. Y'all can call it a coincidence if you'd like, but I'm going to go with providence. I believe we can manifest happiness in our lives, so when shit like this happens I just say a little prayer of thanks and enjoy it.

A little while after talking to him, I spent time doing one of my favorite things: reading the Big Book with a sponsee. It's hard to articulate what is so incredible about this if you aren't in recovery, but I will tell you that sitting with someone while he discovers that not only is his life not over, but that it is just beginning would melt the hardest cynic. And since I'm already a big crybaby, it's usually all I can do to not start bawling in the middle of a sentence.

Then we went to a meeting together, after which several of us went to a friend's apartment and watched episodes from season one of Archer. We all sat there and laughed our asses off and had as much or more fun as I ever had drunk or high. Total cost of that day: The dollar I put in the basket at the meeting and whatever two bottles of soda cost.

Today was more of the same, only completely different. Breakfast with my sponsor emeritus, where I got to be exactly who I am knowing without doubt that he gets me completely. If you have a friend in your life that gets you, I don't have to explain to you how valuable that is.

Off to the beach with friends, one of whom is really the first friend I made when I moved here this time around. We used to play tennis together until he abandoned me for soccer, but we still get to go to the beach and play smashball like it is a life and death proposition. This is really the reason I'm exhausted. The bitch is 20 years younger than me and acts like I should be able to keep up with him. I hope when I finally have my heart attack he has to carry me all the way back to the car. That'll fix him.

Next was probably the most awesome part of the weekend – celebrating a friend's 3rd sober birthday. Every milestone is a miracle, because for most of us who had lost all hope of getting our lives back, every DAY is a miracle. The room was overflowing with people, laughter and gratitude. There were some people with 30-some days sober and one guy who is almost 30 years sober. Just beautiful.

Finally, I wrapped the day up with a meeting and a trip to the frozen yogurt shop where we screamed and hooted and laughed like idiots all over again. And because my friend bought breakfast and I don't really like frozen yogurt, this whole day cost me about $5, plus the amount of gas I used driving to the beach and back.

So for about ten bucks total, I completely wore myself out with fun and friendship this weekend. It really is a wonderful life. And as a bonus, it's a wonderful world as well.

p.s. I chose this version of this song because it's classic Miss Ross. It's from the Concert in Central Park. Not only did she not have a clue what the song is about, she couldn't even be bothered to learn the words. It's truly one of my all-time favorite Diana Ross moments, probably only topped by this passage from her first auto-biography: "My story has often been referred to as a classic 'rags to riches', but in truth, that description doesn't fit me at all. For starters, the Rosses were never raggedy."

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