My First Meeting. Well, the one that mattered.

My first meeting was welcoming and odd. I knew some of the people by sight and in passing. The one thing that stuck out most about the meeting, in fact I do not even remember what the topic was, was the overwhelming peace and grace and a love without condition that radiated from those present. Every person was a living testament to the power of unity, recovery, and service. The power of the program.

There were less than 10 of us present but the power was profound. While I only read from the text "Hope for Today" during my time to speak, I felt truly heard. It had been years since that occurred. Maybe forever!

No judgment, no condemnation, no advice, just a room full of people passionately focused on making sure each person was lovingly acknowledged and tenderly edified. "Keep coming back" was the only admonition.

Wow! What a simple start to a life from the insanity and unmanageability I had called existing for far too long.

Step One was easy for me; I was ready to admit my powerlessness over alcohol and my addictions - my life was unmanageable. I did not even "feel" anymore. I was present but I was not truly living. I had worked myself into a corner and, somehow, I just knew this group of people may offer hope in rediscovering who I really was and how to recover my self from decades of stinking thinking and self-loathing rooted in anger, guilt and shame.

Perhaps you too are unable to overcome the challenges of the alcoholic(s) in your life.

If so, find an Al-Al-Anon meeting ( The experience, strength, and hope I found, and continue to find, is available to all who come with a history of living with alcoholism.

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