David and Me

By Jamie B 07/17/19

At the outset, it may seem that I don’t have anything in common with David, and I really mean nothing. He is after all, just over 17 feet tall, weighs approximately 12,000 lbs., and was born over 500 years ago. He is always naked, carries a slingshot over his left shoulder, his right hand is bigger than his left and he has eyes problems. He was partially delivered in 1466, but was not completely born until almost 40 years later. He currently lives at Accademia Gallery in Florence and has had many visitors over the years. Unfortunately, not all of them have been friendly. In 1991, Piero Cannata attacked him with a hammer and broke 3 of his toes.

You would be right if you agreed that David and I seemingly have nothing in common.

The David that I am referring to, is of course Michelangelo’s masterpiece. Michelangelo was commissioned to complete David in August of 1501, 50 years after Agostino, who was under the direction of Donatello, abruptly stopped working on the massive piece of marble. This slab of marble lay dormant until Michelangelo began to work it in the early morning of 13th September 1501, a month after he was awarded the contract to continue the work. David was revealed to the world on 8th September 1504.

Although the statue was not warmly received by the Florentine public, it was considered by many of Michelangelo’s contemporaries to be magnificent. Giorgio Vasari, often called the first art historian, commented on David in the mid 1500’s that, “When all was finished, it cannot be denied that this work has carried off the palm from all other statues, modern or ancient, Greek or Latin; no other artwork is equal to it in any respect, with such just proportion, beauty and excellence did Michelangelo finish it”.

When Michelangelo was asked how he accomplished such a feat in producing the final statue, he is reputed to have replied “I took everything away that wasn’t David”.

Having been drink free for almost 60 days now, I am learning more about the ‘Life of Sobriety’. I am learning that the life I was always supposed to live is within my grasp. The real me will be able to surface once again and my character defects will begin to be replaced with my own true values and beliefs. Is it simple? The Big Book tells me that it is. Is it easy? Heck no. There have been tears, anger, frustrations and the voicing of resentments during the past 2 months. There has been heartache and there have been disappointments.

However, what is becoming clearer to me as I travel along this unfamiliar pathway and road less travelled, is, that if I do what is suggested, if I believe that my therapist, my sponsor, my A.A. groups and my network of people that are joining me on this journey of self-discovery are correct, then I must turn myself over to my Higher Power.

If I do all of these things then David and I are remarkably similar. My program will “Take away everything that wasn’t Jamie”.


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