How 12 Step Helps Me Every Time

21 May 2017 Written by 

My daughter, Marcie, has always seemed to struggle with keeping track of her life and belongings. But one time her forgetfulness put in her a scary situation and I could no nothing to help her. Marcie was 17 and on one of her many adventures, this time volunteering in an orphanage in Belize, when the unthinkable happened.

She lost her passport on one plane and was left behind in another airport as the rest of her team continued onto Belize. She was panicked and five hours away from me. This was a  lesson for both of us. How to be effective when you're really scared.

My sponsor in Al-Anon always told me to “Breathe” whenever anything felt out of control. So that is what I told Marcie when she called me panicked. Thankfully she listened and calmed down enough to stop crying. In my frightened mindset all I could hear was my sponsor’s voice saying, “Do the next right thing.”  So I encouraged Marcie to breathe and focus on the next right thing.

Marcie began by asking the airline to have the flight crew look for her passport. She waited at the terminal for an hour until finally she heard it had been found. Unfortunately, the plane and her passport were now on their way to New York City. The flight was scheduled to return to Miami the next morning and the airline said it would be sure to bring her passport.

Meanwhile she had called the organization she was working for and let them know of her predicament. They told her to catch the noon flight out the next day to Belize and then take a taxi to the orphanage.

She was going to stay in a hotel at the airport that night. I remembered my Sponsor telling me how important it was in times of great crisis to count my blessings. Even though I was terrified for my 17 year-old daughter alone in an airport, I counted my blessings.

  • My daughter was sleeping in a hotel room and not in the terminal.
  • My daughter had been wise enough to ask the right people for help by only talking to people from the airline.
  • My daughter had a Higher Power protecting her.
  • My daughter was calling me to keep me in the loop so I wouldn't worry.

My Sponsor was right. Counting my blessings reminded me how much was right instead of only focusing on my fears and the unknown.  

The next terrifying thought was that of my young daughter flagging down a taxi alone in Belize.

I started to replay the scenes from,” Taken” with my old habit of “catastrophe thinking.” I imagined her being kidnapped and never seeing her again. This time I looked for help in Step 3 of the 12 steps. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as I understood God.

I had a moment of complete clarity. My daughter needed an escort and I had no way of getting her one. So I turned my will and Marcie over to the care of God. The moment I chose to trust Step 3 and my Higher Power to help, I felt courageous, instead of powerless.  I went to bed feeling peace about the situation even though nothing had changed.

The organization's headquarters in Minnesota called Marcie the next morning to tell her that they had a board member flying out of the same airport on the same flight as hers and was headed to the same orphanage. It was too good to be true: a personal escort for my daughter. Some people call this manifesting.

Throughout this ordeal I had to choose to trust God and other people to help my daughter. It was difficult to relinquish control and trust the universe to supply what Marcie needed, but I had no choice this time. God had done for me what I couldn’t do for myself…

Content Originally Published By: Madeline Schloop @ Reach Out Recovery

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Read 1200 times Last modified on Saturday, 12 August 2017 17:34
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Madeline Schloop

Madeline is the widow of a man who died of alcoholism and the mother of 5 young adults whom she parents with the tools of Al-Anon. Her children continue to be affected by the disease of alcoholism. Her stories  deal with life's daily trials and what has and hasn't worked.
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