Responding to Response

January 25


Responding to Response


Thankfully I’m not in charge of what is so freely given in this program. I want it to be available, but I want gratitude to be the universal response.  At first I thought I couldn’t understand how anyone could hold this gift in their hands and not feel grateful, truth is I know exactly how that’s done and I don’t want to look at that ugly thing.  “Cunning, Baffling, Powerful” But they left out how repulsive it is, maybe they didn’t want to see it either, or thought it was self-explanatory.

No matter which, I’m glad I am not the arbiter of the flowing fount that is recovery, I might have been tempted to cap and meter it, killing all the beauty and wild randomness that makes it real and true.  I despair that others don’t recover as I recover and yet I am relieved that I didn’t have to drink as they drank.

I have to see those around me well enough to stay out of their traps or follow their leads, whichever is appropriate, but I don’t have to adjudicate their reply.


Pick up sticks and put downs stones





I go to my button box
To sort out my life.
I lay out the matching sets
The various sizes, shapes and colors.

Coat buttons are commanding
But unsuitable for delicate places.
The tiny pearl buttons with shanks pull my attention
But work well only on silks.

The metal, shell and horn buttons
Come from such far off places
And all end up crossing my table
As I try to see clearly how to stick with the winners.

I know the people represented in this box.
The strong, the loud, the beautiful.
I know the weak and the unique,
The ones of special circumstances and occasions.

I come to the realization the simple ones,
The buttons sewn on the inside,
The ones who silently give strength
And support to the large and the small alike.

The ones which come in every shade and size,
Who match their ability
To service they render others,
These are my favorites.

They make secure all the things I love and trust
Flat and unobtrusive these buttons
Hold fast the fabric of my life.





You are reading selections from More Sober on the Way to Sane and Lines From My Life by Sherrie Theriault


About Sherrie Theriault

Sherrie Theriault, writer and outsider artist lives in northwest New Jersey where she writes villain-free fiction for children and young adults, creates coloring books for all ages, writes daily inspiration books for the recovery community and has other works of collected poetry; also adult fiction. Books available on include the following: Cala Mae The Deep Dark Day In The Congenial Chronicles The Holland’s Adventure Fill Me In Fill Me In, Too Filled In Sober on the Way to Sane More Sober on the Way to Sane Lines from My Life More Lines from My Life On-Liners to Live By My Sponsor Said… Elissa: Queen of Carthage Was Love Lost Order of Protection The Story Precedes the Question Can You See? What the Birdies Told Me about You What the Birdies Told Me about You Coloring book The Enchanting Dog Sherrie’s books are available at Blue Stockings, Manhattan, NY, The Clinton Book Shoppe, Clinton, New Jersey, Giovanni’s Room, Philadelphia, PA, Easy Does It in Long Beach, CA and The Latest Thing in Costa Mesa, Ca. You can find Sherrie’s art work at Hang-Ups Gallery in Allentown, PA or online at: Please feel free to contact her there if you have any questions.
This entry was posted in 12 step recovery, Affirmation, Alcoholics Anonymous, Button Box, Hope, Humor, Poetry, Sponsorship, Wisdom and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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