COVID-19 is global however so is recovery from addiction
The first time I walked into a 12- action conference I was overwhelmed by how many people were in this together. I returned. And when the people around me applauded and congratulated me as I marked 30, 60, and then 90 days of sobriety, I felt years of pity lifting.
The secret of 12- action healing is the actions. However “the spaces” are the heart of Alcoholics Anonymous and its associated fellowships. The rooms are the meeting point where other addicts talk about their lives, their misery and the challenging roadway back. Those stories are frequently amazing. An ex-prisoner with a stone-hard look will weep and speak about years lost running away from his worries. A senior company executive will describe the stunning steps she as soon as took for that one last hit. There’s no judgment. Everybody here has actually walked through horror.
Now due to social distancing constraints the rooms are closed. There is a genuine and present danger for addicts and alcoholics who searching for a way out. They can no longer have a long-sober member offer their hand and inform them they are amongst friends.
If the fellowships are to continue to be the best, last hope, they need to adapt to a COVID-19 world. And they are doing it.
Watching and listening to other addicts on social networks is not the exact same experience for me as a person talking on the other side of the room. Despair is the fuel of dependency, so I am going to comprehend these brand-new opportunities, and not be too nostalgic about the world I left simply a month earlier.
” Zoom meetings” can be incredible. In the last fortnight I have actually belonged to meetings range from Melbourne, Sydney, London, California and New York City, and listened to stories from the Philippines, South Asia, the Middle East and the Caribbean. Stories that can be amusing, dreadful and unfortunate … and much like the stories from the conferences at home.
And I have actually closely enjoyed the faces of fellow tourists in a manner not always possible– or desirable– in the rooms. I don’t want to look at a person talking about years of abuse and self-destruction. However a digital connection suggests that person on the screen is looking at me and speaking to me. I see their face and sense their experience in a different method. I do not seem like a voyeur but as a good friend or confidant. I feel moved.
And these meetings are being held around the clock. If the 3am “Dark Night of the Soul” strikes, there’s a meeting you can log onto, in Birmingham or Florida, and be immediately among the tribe.
This infection is altering social structures and work structures. The endgame is not even vaguely clear. However for those of us whose lives depend upon hearing from other individuals who have actually moved past their damaged lives there is still hope. Those people may be in Manila or New Delhi, but they are also here in your meeting. The virus is global, the economic fallout is international, however it’s likewise clear: recovery can be international.
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