Did Step 5 with an Al-a-Pal Tuesday. I was nervous but we quickly got into the details. The aura of acceptance and love helped me have courage to share even my Item A. Finished feeling tired but free.

I have my new copy of Paths to Recovery. In rereading the text for Step 5, I find that I’m getting ahead of myself by fretting over who I’ll be doing Step 5 with. I’d already determined that I need to finish studying Step 5 before actually performing it, but even then, there are separate parts to the step, so altogether the checklist looks a bit like this:

  • Study Step 5, to include readings and answering questions.
  • Admit to God the exact nature of my wrongs. I believe a quiet place where I can address God aloud would be good for this, as it doesn’t seem quite real enough to speak with God silently. We’ll need to go through the inventory item by item.
  • Admit to myself the exact nature of my wrongs. I don’t know yet how I’ll do this part but hope to discover this during the study phase. It could involve drawing charts or summarizing what I found while going over it with God.
  • Admit to another human being the exact nature of my wrongs. I have faith that by the time I get to this part, my Higher Power will either have shown me who this should be or will do so soon. So now I can let go of my concern about this part.
I have what in some places is called an “Item A”. This is an item in my inventory that is so difficult to talk about that I can’t even write about it, so it is listed as Item A. This intermediate practice helps the item stop being a secret – it sort of puts a handle on the item by which I can begin dragging it into the light. I acknowledge that it’s there, and I know what it stands for, so I can begin handling this without denial of its existence.
I believe by naming my Item A aloud to God and to myself, this will help further drag it out of secrethood so that I can name this item when I finally get to the last part. If I think about that too much right now, it will scare me, but if I set this aside and just do the part where I am now, surely it will be fine when I get there.