Who Am I Really?

Who Am I Really?

Who Am I Really?

Yesterday, I was watching a video on TikTok of actress Renée Elise Goldsberry participating in a “table talk” of other actresses and she said something that really hit me hard that I could instantly identify with. Here is the basic premise of what she said…

“One Sunday I was sitting in church and the reverend started saying with much gusto, “We have a GUEST IN THE HOUSE today!!!!!” and then he started going on about this list of great and wonderful things… ‘She did THIS and she did THAT!!!!'” Renée went onto say to the ladies at the table, “And I’m looking around and I’m thinking, ‘Who’s in the house today?…’ because I’m so excited someone special is in the house.” At the very end he says, “Ron Goldsberry’s daughter, Renée Goldsberry… and I’m SHOCKED!!! I’m shocked because he literally said everything I’m doing and have done… but in that moment – I didn’t recognize myself because of the year I’d just had. I had two very painful miscarriages, one was in the second trimester and it was terribly and emotionally painful and there was just SO much that had gone on in that year. I stood up and thanked him and everyone in the church and then I sat down.  But when I sat down, I realized that people don’t do anyone a service in this world today by reading these bios that are not representative of who we really are. To say things like, ‘Renée Elise Goldsberry, she’s an Emmy and  Tony award winner…’ to introduce you… but it really isn’t who you are and quite honestly it’s not the most valuable part of who you are.” She went onto say what I found to be the most important thing – “What’s most valuable about me are the things that I’ve survived.

In A.A., we talk at great length when sharing our experience, strength, and hope about the things we’ve survived without even really knowing it. It’s one of the many reasons that when asked to tell my story from the podium today, I try and focus less on what we often call a “drunk-a-logue” (which by the way is nowhere in our literature and is nothing more than the consequences of our actions like jail, divorce, lost jobs, etc.) and focus as much time I can on the insidious insanity of my alcoholic brain.

People can rattle off a list of all the service I’ve done, all the things I’ve accomplished, all my good works for sure, but NONE of those things are representative of who I really am (as my past trustee and past delegate service sponsor jokingly says, “Delegate-Schmelegate. It’s just a service I am privileged to provide.”).  If someone really wants to know who I am and what I find to be the most valuable things in my life, it starts and ends with those things that I’ve survived. I survived a horrible collection of belief sets that told me, “I am not worthy,” “nobody likes me,” “I will never amount to anything,” “I will be single the rest of my life,” “this time it will be different”… on and on and on ad infinitum.

I’ve survived (for today) a hopeless state of mind and body that has given me that life beyond my wildest dreams I always knew I wanted but never thought I’d have.  At some point though, I have to ask the question, “Does that make me special?” Absolutely not! At least not in the way my pride and ego want to make it out to be. I’m special today because of everything a God of my understanding has given me which ultimately is the strength to survive.  I did none of that on my own.

So, who am I really?  Maybe that’s not the real question that needs to be asked… maybe the most valuable question I can ask myself today is, “Who’s Am I Really?”

In love & service,



  1. Avatar


    Says May 29, 2024 at 1:07 pm

    Thanks Rick. So true.
    Sometimes when I share I ask myself ‘ how will my share best help the new comer?’
    I’m 28 years sober and life is bigger than ever. My family are all living with complex mental health issues or big life events at the moment and how I show up – ‘Who am I in this space’ really makes a difference’
    I am truly grateful for this program.
    It has shown me what I am and how I can show up in the most meaningful way. Leaning into and using the Toolkit of recovery. One moment at a time. One day at a time.
    Yours in Fellowship
    Barb F ❤️
    Samford night Group Brisbane Australia

    • Avatar

      Rick W.

      Says May 29, 2024 at 1:12 pm

      Hi Barb,

      Thank you much for sharing. What a great reminder to ask myself, “how will my share best help the newcomer?” It’s really easy for me to forget that’s the main reason I’m sharing. I love getting to hear from folks all around the world. I’ve been to Sydney but never Brisbane. Thanks for reminding me that while we all have different customs, the 12 Steps are the 12 Steps regardless of what part of the planet we’re on. God bless. 🙏🏼💙🕊️

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