Colin’s Story: Finding a Way to Embrace Step 2

By Colin, Renascent Alumni

I spent 30+ years playing a role. Performing miracles, where I turned trust from my family into money; love from girlfriends into free rent; faith from employers into sums of undeserved wages; and loyalty from friends into scams and lies. 

So when the time came at Renascent Paul J. Sullivan Centre to ask myself, “do I now believe, or am I willing to believe that there is a power greater than myself?” My answer was no. I had lived my lie too long to see the truth that everyone else seemed to see. 

The Big Book talks about prejudice a few times during the Step 2 readings. Mine were more like excuses. After graduating in 2020, I left the House feeling confused and resentful. I had done “the work.” Should I not he happy?

I went back to my performance, but I congratulated myself. I had stopped draining finances from my family, I attended lots of meetings, got a sponsor, and had sober friends. 

I also had the nicest shoes and clothing, and I presented myself politely to all. Was I showing love and respect to my fellow man? No. I was miserable and the loneliness was just too much. Eventually I left sobriety behind. I had no illusions that I could use with any control. I had given up. 

When I got myself back to Sullivan Centre this time, I was broken in every way. I begged to come back. I wanted what the people I had met here had. They were happy. Truly happy, in spite of whatever life throws at them. I knew each individual’s history and yet they had climbed out of the pit of despair and were living life on life’s terms. 

My counsellor said to me “do you want my help this time?” My first thought was that he had somehow not wanted to help before! (That is how my insanity works.) My second thought was how desperate I was for help. I said “yes” and cried wholeheartedly – perhaps for the first time. He said I’d have to do whatever was suggested of me from that moment on. That was my first honest belief that there was a solution, to trust the process.

I saw many different ways that proved to me beyond a doubt that there are powers greater than any one human being.

Have you ever been in a discussion group where three random topics are picked by different people? I find it fascinating that no matter which topics get picked, they each flow into one another, and ALWAYS have something to do with what I am working on, feeling, or going through on that day. 

I stopped believing in coincidences, and just started believing, and the miracles keep coming. 

About the Authors

Members of Renascent's alumni community carry the message by sharing their experiences and perspectives on addiction and recovery. To contribute your alumni perspective, please email