Step Nine in recovery
Recovery is NOT easy, but it is worth it.
I chose the one who was the easiest to do first because I am, under all the masks, a chicken. I had only called this person a bad name during an argument and I had to apologize because it was untrue.
Besides, I had not seen this person in months. It could take a while. She had changed her phone number and moved. I had no way to reach her.
The very next day I ran into her at the store. What kind of freaking coincidence is that?!? I had done the previous four steps, I had come to believe in a higher power, I had chosen to turn my life over to that higher power, I had trusted the higher power to help me with the list and I had trusted them to help me with my amends. I was shocked that my Higher power moved so quickly! I could not believe it!
I asked her if we could get together and talk. She looked at me funny. I smiled, shakily. She smiled.
We got together the next day. I apologized for calling her that name and told her that I knew it was untrue.
She lost her mind!!! She had forgotten about it and I had reminded her of it. Wow! I had no idea she was that loud! I felt like a complete idiot and ran out muttering apologies to everyone around. Not a very happy first try...
I went home and cried on the phone to my sponsor. She was very understanding, until she could understand what I was saying. Then, she laughed. When she was finished laughing, she talked to me about my expectations. Damn! More work to do before attempting any more amends...
I had to write out several scenes of the next amends I wanted to make and talk them over with her. The first one was with the amends going very badly (like the last one), the second one was with the amends going indifferent (as if it made no difference to them), and the last one was if the amends went very well (maybe became friends..).
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The next one I chose was a bit more difficult. I had worked for this woman, cleaning her house. She had given me some money to buy things for her house. I put it in my purse and forgot about it. A couple of months later, she lost her job and so I lost mine. I forgot to give her back her money. I found it in my purse several months later. I used it and replaced it I don't even know how many times. I went to her and apologized, giving her the money back.
She laughed and said she had never missed it, refused to take the money back, and we parted on good terms. I would not say we are friends, but I no longer feel bad when I see her anymore.
I called my sponsor when I got home. I thought I had done a good job on this one and was angry when she told me I had to write out why it was wrong of me to allow her to not let me return the money. It had to be a full page.
How could I insult her by insisting that she take the money back after she had refused it several times. I, even, tried to give it to her children and she took it from them and gave it back to me!
The next time, I chose to bite the bullet and take on one I thought would turn into an arrest. I decided if I was going to fail at this amends thing, I was going to do a good job of it.
I had gone along with my husband (at the time), possibly even encouraged him, when he came up with the idea of taking a borrowed television to the dope man and trade it for dope. This woman had been there for me, personally, and us, as a couple, since the day we met her. She had helped us in ways I am still discovering. The television belonged to her recently deceased husband.
"I have learned three things in my life. Fish swim in water. Birds fly in the sky. Addicts use... Everything and everyone until it is all gone." Unknown who said it first (at least by me).
I felt horrid. It took me a week to write it in my fourth step. I had skipped it twice during my fifth step. I was avoiding this one. I had to look this beautiful woman in the face and tell her I had stolen her deceased husbands television.
HOW DO YOU REPAY SOMETHING LIKE THAT? My sponsor said, "However she wants you to."