When you are a recovering alcoholic in early sobriety, you need to make getting to AA meetings a top priority. Even on Saturday night. And even when there’s a huge NFL playoff game on like last night.
One of my favorite local AA meetings starts at 7pm on Saturday night while the “normies” are just pouring their first cocktails. Most nights, it’s a packed house with at least 40 people there. It’s a beginners meeting where people with less than 1 year of sobriety have first dibs at sharing. I always try to share.
So last night I went, and shared my latest relapse with everyone. It was certainly humbling and embarrassing. When they are giving out sobriety coins and say there’s no shame for the 24 hour coin, well, that’s b.s. for me. I have enough 24 hour coins already. I don’t want anymore. At this point, I don’t want to even keep track of days sober. I just want to focus on the day I’m in.
Anyways, there’s a woman named “Julie” at the meeting who I know and just celebrated her 4 year anniversary. Julie is a suburban mom of two kids and became a raging alcoholic and drug addict, winding up with several OUI’s and having to live in a halfway house. After the meeting she said to me,
“Dick, you can really help people. You have a gift. You can do big things here and out there. We need you to stay sober so you can help others. I know you can do this.”
I was just floored. I’m not quite sure what kind of “gift” I have, but I sure appreciated the kind words.
One day at a time…