The Only Requirement
© The A.A.
Grapevine, Inc. - Date unknown
On Monday, October 18th,
1982, I awoke out of a blackout. I was in a hospital where
I was told I was a chronic alcoholic, suffering from a
disease called Alcoholism, for which, “there is
no cure ... but there is “recovery,” if I
could get to AA. Then I was asked if I believed in God.
My answer was “No f-ing way!” The doctor told
me that I may have a chance, “...just get toAA.”
I was taken to a meeting
and told, “The only requirement for membership is
a desire to stop drinking” – the Third Tradition.
I was a member because I said so, and no one could tell
me to leave. It was suggested that I don’t drink
and go to meetings. I also got a Sponsor and joined a
group, but NO GOD.
My Sponsor told me, “Fake
it ‘til you make it.” I bent my knees and
asked a Power greater than myself for help – one
day at a time. It took quite awhile for me to get a Higher
Power. I was sober, and beautiful things started to happen.
It wasn’t me. So, being a Native, I returned to
my Creator as my Higher Power. I gave Him a name –
Ralph. Each day He reminds me of the Tradition that brought
me to – and kept me in – Alcoholics Anonymous
. Over the years I have watched many who could admit they
were bad drunks, but that word “alcoholic”
just got caught in their throat.
This is why I always tell
newcomers: “The only requirement for membership
is a desire to stop drinking .”