“Improve your memory – tell the truth.”
Toward the end of my drinking my memory got worse and worse. To start with, my mind was a big blur from being constantly loaded, or from recovering from a blackout. In addition, it got harder and harder to remember what story or excuse I had recently made up or who I had told what to. Because my drinking had become the most important thing in my life I had begun lying to protect it, and because most of the lies and stories I made up were followed by a drinking binge, I couldn’t keep anything straight. It’s no wonder people stopped hanging around me.
When I got sober and my head began to clear, I went right on lying and telling stories. As I worked the Steps what I realized was that I was lying to protect my ego and get my own way. I quickly found the truth in the statement that ‘self-centeredness and self-seeking’ was my natural state as an untreated alcoholic. It took a lot of inventories and conversations with my sponsor before I was ready to get honest. I also had to uncover, discover and discard a lot of character defects that were keeping me sick before I could fully recover.
Today my life is much easier now that my default is to just tell the truth. I no longer feel the need to defend or construct a big story because today I’ve learned how to be responsible and honest. Today I go through life looking for ways to be of service rather than to cheat or deceive. It’s a wonderful feeling to be able to look someone in the eye again and feel a part of the human race. And best of all, my memory has improved because today I tell the truth.