Okay, ya have to admit that the first time you ever heard somebody say the 11th step out loud and used the words (by mistake, not purposefully) “Prayer and Medication” instead of Prayer and Meditation”, that it was pretty frakking funny. At least it was for me – I was practically rolling on the floor laughing out loud. As if nobody had ever uttered those words before…
Just got back from a meditation meeting – wasn’t sure if it was really AA or not, but at least it was centred on the 11th step. And I was reminded one more time of the power of silence. I’ll probably go back, as meditation is good medication for someone like me whose natural state is anything but calm and relaxed.
Isn’t it funny though, that as soon as I got home I received a message from someone that they are on the “marijuana maintenance program”. They don’t drink alcohol, but use marijuana for “pain management”, and wanted to know what I thought about that.
Know what? I don’t. I don’t think about it. I don’t judge others. But for anyone who thinks that I SHOULD care, then maybe they do have a problem. For me, I never even tried marijuana, let alone any of the harder drugs, but this I do know – the quality of someone’s sobriety who uses a mood-altering substance in an addictive manner can’t be that great.
If I need a medication prescribed by my doctor, I will take it. What the prescription runs out, or I no longer need it, I stop taking the medication. I realize that I am blessed not to suffer from chronic pain or depression and thus don’t need any regular medication, but as long as a competent health professional is possessed of all the facts and has prescribed a medication to even that out, then I wouldn’t worry about the quality of my sobriety. Our health is too important.
Now about health: A body badly burned by alcohol does not often recover overnight nor do twisted thinking and depression vanish in a twinkling. We are convinced that a spiritual mode of living is a most powerful health restorative. We, who have recovered from serious drinking, are miracles of mental health. But we have seen remarkable transformations in our bodies. Hardly one of our crowd now shows any dissipation.
But this does not mean that we disregard human health measures. God has abundantly supplied this world with fine doctors, psychologists, and practitioners of various kinds. Do not hesitated to take your health problems to such persons. Most of them give freely of themselves, that their fellows may enjoy sound minds and bodies. Try to remember that though God has wrought miracles among us, we should never belittle a good doctor or psychiatrist. Their services are often indispensable in treating a newcomer and in following his case afterward. Big Book Page 133
So there you have it – we must often seek outside help in addition to our AA program, from qualified medical professionals in the mental and physical health fields. Mind you, we need a good dose of common sense sometimes when even a doctor gets wacky ideas:
One of the many doctors who had the opportunity of reading this book in manuscript form told us that the use of sweets was often helpful, of course depending upon a doctor’s advice. He thought all alcoholics should constantly have chocolate available for its quick energy value at times of fatigue. He added that occasionally in the night a vague craving arose which would be satisfied by candy. Many of us have noticed a tendency to eat sweets and have found this practice beneficial. Big Book Page 134
Now prescribing chocolate to me is probably not a great idea. Considering the damage that I’ve done to my teeth with chocolate, and the addictive way in which I ate chocolate. I suppose chocolate is better than the alternative, but I think I’d better pray for guidance about chocolate. I’m not so sure that now that my obsession for alcohol has been removed that I want to replace it with an obsession for chocolate. Did I mention the word chocolate? I may have another problem other than alcohol…