Sixty-two and Counting
With OA, it was love at first sight. Within weeks, I committed to work the Steps and was embraced by my kindred spirits. At long last, I was home.
I was also beginning to deal with the damages of childhood sexual abuse. Besides OA meetings and literature, I was waist-deep in therapy, flashbacks, and more pain than I knew existed. So I was understandably proud when my sixty-day chip took its place on my key chain.
Then the unexpected happened. I became overwhelmed. Deeper memories surfaced, pain multiplied, and I lost my precious abstinence and faith in my Higher Power.
Another thirty days passed as I struggled with anger, guilt, pain, and a sense of losing something irreplaceable. No matter how I tried, I couldn’t get my abstinence back. I felt ashamed, but the continued love and acceptance of my sponsor and friends in OA brought me back to meetings again and again. It wasn’t the same as when I was abstinent, but I knew it was where I needed to be.
Then it happened. I regained my abstinence. First for one day, then two. I wondered if I should take that precious chip off my key chain. The thought of starting from scratch was very depressing.
Suddenly I knew I wasn’t starting from scratch. Even though I lost my abstinence, I still had recovery. Through those thirty dark days, I never left OA.
So once again I’m counting the days. I had sixty days of abstinence before I got off track so that’s where I’m picking it up again: sixty-one, sixty-two, and still counting. It’s so good to be back home.
— Lifeline, May 1991