November 25

GRATITUDE MONTH: DAY 25: “God gave you a gift of 84,600 seconds today. Have you used one of them to say thank you?”― William Arthur Ward

I also use this quote every year. What a concept! I know I used quite a few seconds this morning to say thank you. I do every day. Even on days when I don’t write this piece, I ALWAYS write my gratitude list. It is so engrained that I cannot remember the last time I did not do it.

And throughout the day, I am mindful to say thank you for those little miracles that happen in my life. I got to have the most amazing experience yesterday. It is the culmination of many years of going into prisons and all the work I get to do there. We go in on AA panels and into meetings inside the jails and prisons. I have been doing this since the first 95 days of my recovery.

I have always loved meeting the people inside and getting to know their journey through healing of their lives and the lives of those they have impacted. AA has a huge role in this healing. I love that part of my recovery and have always loved being of service in this capacity. It is truly my best and favorite thing. I got to step it up into a new level yesterday by participating in an all-day, 12-step conference. It began about 8:30 am and ran till 8:30 pm. We worked through all 12 steps with the inmates. AA members sat at tables with them while other members participated in sharing their experience with the steps and teaching them to work through each one. Powerful stuff! I loved it!

While the format was challenging at times to disseminate so much information in one day, it is by far the most exciting event I have attended inside a prison ever!

My dream has always been to work with these guys on the steps. They have no access to outside sponsors, or have to rely on mail service to do that work. Some of them are going to be inside a prison for many years and should have access to this amazing process. Now I understand the framework and will see how possible or probable it is to implement it into other institutions. I feel powerfully drawn to doing this kind of work. Always have. Now I believe it can be done elsewhere.

With my personal background in treatment dynamics and working with groups, along with the education and credentials I possess, I think this is entirely possible and doable. I know what some of the challenges are going to be, but I also have some access to the people who can help me work this out. It was a great day! And the people I got to meet were fabulous. What a gift it all is!

So, I am sorry if you missed this writing piece yesterday, (I doubt anyone really noticed), but I was otherwise engaged. That happens, and I no longer stress myself to get it done in addition to whatever else I may be doing when I travel. It is all good. I have a lighter grip on things these days. Yay! Enjoy your November 25th and please use some of those seconds to be in a thankful place.

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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