When I first got clean and sober I had a lot of time on my hands.
I was unemployable, and the only thing I did was go to meetings every day.
So I learned to show up early and make coffee, clean the meeting room, and I stayed late
and talked with others and took the trash out. On Saturdays I would meet other newcomers to
clean the room. Sweep and mop the floors, clean the bathrooms, do the dishes.
I was told this was service work and in order to stay clean I needed to be of service.
It was literally all I had to offer. It put me in a state of mind that I have never lost, thankfully.
I began to understand and I brought that idea of service home with me.
I was living with my girlfriend (Laura) in her apartment in Port Arthur, Tx. I had no money to
contribute to food or rent or any of the other bills, so I began giving back with service.
I cleaned the apartment every day, did the laundry, cooked the meals, did all of the chores.
Again, it was all I had to offer, but I made sure I was doing everything I could.
Just because I was broke didn't mean I was broken. I was able bodied and capable.
If I contributed with service I wouldn't feel like a heel, it worked.
About 90 days into recovery I was asked to go with a group of people to the Franklin House
in Beaumont to help share a meeting. The Franklin House is a halfway home for addicts and alcoholics. So we would go there on Saturdays and have a meeting and share how the program was working in our lives in hopes that these folks would come join us at our meetings when they got released. I was told this was service work and to be of service to my fellow man.
I was told I would feel better if I did something for someone else, it would help me forget how
crappy my own life was at this time. It worked absolutely.
As I continued in my own recovery I began to understand that being of service was a way of life.
I had lived an entire life of "what can you do for me?" and I was learning now to live life like "what can I do for you?". It has stuck for the past 13 and a half years. Life is always about doing for someone other than myself. Being of service to my family is very important. Making breakfast, cleaning the house, paying the bills on time, buying clothes for my children rather than buying things for myself. I have to work to keep this family going, but I don't have to work 24 hours a day. I have learned to put work away and spend time with my family. I make sure I am not working too much, cause what's the point? I am also of service to my band members, to the people I work with.
I sincerely try to be of service every chance I get and in every aspect of my life and it is not easy and I do not always succeed, but it is a way of life I learned in recovery and I am thankful.
Being of service makes life so much easier and peaceful. Rather than taking so much, I just try to give away as much I can, whats the least I can live with? I sleep peaceful at night and have very little stress when I give it all away. Funny enough, I always get back so much more in return.
I literally get back double what I give. Double the love, double the money and double the happiness.
Life is wonderful when I share it with others and it is dark and bleak when I keep it to myself.
I can't do everything I want to do, but I try my best to make sure I am of service everyday.
I bring it with me everywhere I go. The less I need, the easier life becomes and ultimately death will
be an easy transition. That is the goal.
Peace, Love, Zito