There are many benefits to recovery. Sometimes I don’t see them in myself until I look at where I was when I first came through the doors, and compare that to where I am today. I believe I would not be sitting here writing to you, were it not for the Program of Alcoholics Anonymous. I believe I would not be here, at all.  When I arrived at the doors, over 22 years ago, I was desperate to connect to others in some way, other than returning to the insanity of drinking. The warmth of the welcome I received gave me hope and kept me returning to the rooms. I came looking for a way out of the misery that defined my life. What I found was a roomful of people with the same aspirations as me. When I heard others share about their road to recovery, I realized that I had found a whole group of people who I could relate to. We shared a path that led to the tables, and to the hope of recovery from the disease of alcoholism. I had secrets, however.  Grief from childhood, and abuse from a family member. Something I had NEVER told a soul. These dark secrets held me prisoner, just like alcohol. Relapse happened, but it doesn’t need to be part of recovery. My will and my life were held hostage by the very things I thought I was saving the world from. On July 4th, I asked for help and sought through prayer, counseling and working with a new sponsor, to be free at last. I have been diagnosed with PTSD, Diabetes, and now Diverticulitis, which needs to be taken care of with surgery. But I KNOW all will be ok. As I took a complete 4th step, and 5th step with my counselor, I have NEVER felt such relief. The obsession was lifted and I can sleep at night. The GREATEST benefit to sobriety is loving myself enough to stay sober for as long as I live. There is so much more to share….One Day……at a time.