monthly question – mth apr 2011


Our question for April was, ““The thing I like best about myself is…”

Louise (Jan. ’11) tells us how she has come to appreciate herself. “In 1968 I attended my first personal growth workshop. During the week-long event, I learned things which changed the way I connected with people –including the third graders I was teaching. I felt alive and full of confidence. Over the next forty years, I participated in other groups. Three stand out.

The first, Life Stream Seminars, had been recommended to me by a friend. It had two parts: ‘Basic’ and, ‘Intensive.’ Basic was a weekend-long event where I learned how to meditate and how to take risks.

The Intensive was held in a motel where we lived in close proximity, never leaving the premises. During that four-day stay, we worked on growth experiences from early morning until late at night. Some were physical, some mental, and some spiritual. Before we could sleep, our homework was to fill both sides of a sheet of notebook paper — top to bottom, edge to edge, no spaces skipped and no margin not filled — with our reactions to the day. This, then had to be shared with a buddy. Intensive was grueling and exhausting, but also one of the best gifts I have ever given myself. In the two years following, I repeated Basic and took a refresher in the Intensive.

The second experience that stands out in my mind came many years later as my life was spinning out of control. That’s when I found The Matt Talbot Program. It was a Twelve Step experience which required attendance at three sessions a week, each one lasting two hours. I learned that not only was I powerless over alcohol, but many other things as well. In the group which I attended for three months, I took huge risks in confronting my demons. I also helped the others to do the same — all in a safe environment with trained leaders.

The third memorable group I have attended has been AlAnon, an organization that offers discussions and speakers for people who have a friend, loved one or family member whose drinking is a concern. I have been involved with this organization for almost five years. I have served groups at local, district and state levels. With the help of a wonderful sponsor, I am now working on “Step Four”, a deep examination of my attributes and defects.

I am proud of myself for taking these risks. They have enriched my life.”


Our question for May is, “As a child, the best toy I ever had was…”

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