Help Me If You Can

September 25, 2018

I wonder: is there a way to give this podcast and website over to other AA’s so that we all become responsible for it and have a hand in it?

I’m sure you’ve recognized the dangers in it for me and you can probably foresee others that I haven’t even recognized yet. 

Here is a list of those dangers as I perceive them:

  • I read a lot of AA literature and can “talk the talk,” but when I actually look at my life and how things are going at home, at work, and with friends and associates, can I honestly say I am “walking the walk?” – Sometimes definitely yes, sometimes definitely no.
  • At some point, do I begin to substitute the interviews for meetings, thereby cutting me off from meetings and helping newcomers? – Not so as of yet, but it is a potential danger.
  • Do I begin to see myself as special or “different from” the people in the rooms, just because I have been blessed with this opportunity? – So far I know without a doubt that I am not responsible for the creation of irunanonymous – it is the solely the work of my Higher Power and I am just a tool in His hands, literally and figuratively…lol.
  • Do I feel pressure to perform at a higher level in running because of the podcast? – Yes, though I’ve quickly realized that by being vulnerable, it is making me more humble, whether I like it or not…lol.
  • Do I offend anyone in my interviews or those listening to them, especially people who are sober without AA? – I sincerely hope not, but realize this may be impossible because at the end of the day, I’m human, and let’s face it, I stopped maturing at 15 which puts me on par with an 18 year old at present.

Of course, Bill Wilson saw that Alcoholics Anonymous would need to be given over to its membership and in 1951 through to 1955 in St.Louis, that vision was realized.  Bill could finally be just another anonymous AA member, at least if only in his own mind.  I certainly don’t want to compare myself to such a great man and thinker or compare this podcast to the life-saving capabilities of AA, but the fact remains that doing it carries a lot of responsibility.  Oh ya, and then there’s the other responsibilities of life like being married, raising three young kids and holding down a full-time job that requires a lot of emotional investment.  I sure don’t want to sound like I’m complaining because I know without a shadow of a doubt that I’ve been abundantly blessed in sobriety – but the truth is, sometimes I’m damn scared to lose it.  All or nothing right?, can anyone else relate?  Bill Wilson stated in a 1962 Grapevine article, “in this life we shall attain nothing like perfect humility and love. So we shall have to settle, respecting most of our problems, for a very gradual progress, punctuated sometimes by heavy setbacks. Our old time attitude of “all or nothing” will have to be abandoned.”  As ultrarunners, I’m sure that you can relate, else why would you stand at the start of some of the races you do and say, “fuck it, let’s do this.”  I love when my sponsor reaches back to this old saying:  “Damned the torpedoes and full steam ahead!,” realizing at the same time that I need be reigned in sometimes.

So having thought and said all this, I suppose that this is a plea to you, the readers and listeners.  If you see a way of sharing in this venture and taking full responsibility for it, by all means, I am open to suggestions.  In the meantime, this is also a plea for you “to call me on my shit” when I’m getting off the rails in any way.  I mean, so far, so good, I think, but the dangers are there and I may be blind to others yet.  So help me be the best AA I can, the best family member, friend, co-worker and runner I can be today.  Because at the end of the day,  I’m praying just like you, “to have all of me, good and bad and to remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to You and to my fellows” (Big Book, 76).  I guess that you and I will have to settle for the “patient progress” we so often hear talked about in the rooms – for now, all I can say is that I’m so glad to have you on this journey with me, “trudging the road” together as we would in the final miles of an ultra.

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