A common thing I hear from fellow addicts in the 12 step meetings is “when will I get my family’s trust back?” or “when can I make my amends for my addiction?” Now this is great to feel remorse and want to make the situation right with their loved ones but it takes time. Let’s face it, when we get sober many of us are not the same people as when we were while using substances, now we become more aware of the past.
When we get to step 9 and make our amends, it does not stop there. Changing the way we live is a lifetime process and perhaps the most significant amends we can make. Therefore, we show our amends through actions, not just words.
We may not be at step 9 yet, but we want to show our loved ones we are working to get better. Each day we make amends by doing the next right thing we are and the way, we are “making it right” is shown through our actions, no words are needed. The ones we love will see it rather than us having to tell them and trust me, that will mean more! Later, when we get to step 9 our words will line up with our behaviors. We are right where we are supposed to be, even if it does not feel that way.
Today we can work on an actively “living our amends” by building our integrity and doing the right thing, even when others are not looking. During step 9 we make amends, but the process is everyday in our lives. There is no finish line, we must race to achieve a prize, “no” we walk before we run. Keep walking the path of recovery and you will be running before you know it!