"You look like a different man these days," Wanda told me at a lunch time AA meeting today. "Your color. You demeanor. Your confidence. You just seem so full of life."
"Thank you," I modestly replied as I shyly looked at my shoes. I never was much one for compliments.
Wanda works third shift at the hospital and was so very tired. She told me she couldn't wait to get home to snuggle with her many dogs and to climb into bed. "Prime drinking time!" she said with a laugh of her mornings. "I had to give up my long love affair with my old boyfriend, Jose Cuervo."
I have found myself enamored with her lately -- often going to familiarly haunted AA meetings just so I can see her. I am walking down the wrong beaten and trod path, though. She is old enough to be my mother. She is a very complex woman -- full of mystery. I guess that is why she is so alluring. I always did love a challenge.
There is always an awkward moment between us as she always wants to go get lunch. I always make up some lame excuse cause I don't have any money and would hate for her to have to pay. I think she takes it personally as if I don't want to spend time with her. Nothing could be further from the truth. I would love to lavish her with meals from firm bars like Applebee's or Chili's. I had the grand total of four dollars in my wallet today, though. Enough for a Happy Meal for one minus the toy they give you.
Today's meeting we discussed the steps to sobriety -- the much vaunted twelve steps. "Let go and let God," one member told me when I talked of my own struggles following the steps. That concept seemed so foreign to me, though. Let go and let God. As if I had no control over my own destiny. I have often struggled with AA for the fact that it seems mystical higher powers take away the urge to drink and not through the own volition of the alcoholic. There seems to be a lack of accountability, but the twelve steps are all about accountability and growth in stark contrast. I guess I will just have to let go and let God. God help me! I feel like a duck out of water! I feel just about as awkward as I would if I told the AA group I was an atheist. Imagine the cold, hard stares!