Typical meeting

The meeting is in the basement of a church.  The room is obviously used for some type of preschool activity.  We bring two heavy, eight foot, tables from a large upstairs room, typical folding metal leg tables with formica tops, and we place them together making a big conference table.  This makes for about a dozen places at the table.  In a ring around this central setup we put other chairs.  They have metal frames and blue or green cushioned plastic seats and backs.  We put big books at places on the table and the remainder on the chairs in the outer circle.   There’s a folder of directions to run the meeting and the page that we left off from in Alcoholics Anonymous, aka the Big Book, last time.  It’s a Big Book meeting and this group by tradition usually reads only a few pages and comments or reacts to the material.  It takes several years to get through the book at this rate.  Sam is making coffee and setting out cream, sugar, stirrers, cookies in a connected room off to one side.  He is a reluctant coffee maker and doesn’t appear to really drink much coffee or like coffee.  This evening we will run out of coffee cups.  Group jobs are designed to teach responsibility, doing things for other alcoholics and encourage social relationships.  Larry and I got there early as always, Frank was there, we sat outside for awhile, actually Frank was complaining a bit about setting the meeting up but when we got inside it was already done.  The usual people were there early, Joe Jackie, George and Tammy, now a couple.  Ginny was the current chairperson.  They had brought a cake for George’s 4 year anniversary.  The meeting filled up, Edith lots of relapses, John new to the meeting lots of relapses, David a nineteen year old heroin addict and alcoholic w only a little time.  Others came in during the first twenty minutes until there were maybe 20 people.  The story we were on “It might have been worse p.348”we were on the last paragraph of p. 355 and managed to finish the chapter.  Comments centered around “…that sobriety meant more to me than anything in this world.” And the central theme of “turning it (one’s will) over (to a power greater than self)” stimulated by the quote “Thy will be done not mine.”  Linda who has about thirteen years, but is going through a very difficult divorce she didn’t want and feels very rejected, was quite upset about people in other meetings complaining about her talking about how badly she was feeling, and Linda was really decompensating and crying, and at the break which became quite extended she was held and comforted by three or four of the women.  So here in this basement room, these people in various stages of recovery, some quite broken and at risk, others more mature and stable, are talking about God, what God might be, the central importance of staying away from a drink or a drug for a day, techniques that work to accomplish that, and comforting this poor abused mother.  After the break Tammy gave George his medallion for four years w a nice series of compliments to his quiet but solid sobriety, remember they are a couple now, and they hugged, and he said a few words in thank you, and briefly said he goes to a lot of meetings and works a simple program.  During the subsequent discussion he and Tammy cut the nice chocolate cake she had made for him and they passed pieces out as the discussion went on.  We ended as usual w the Lord’s Prayer.  Larry, Jim and I walked over to the pizza shop and had pizza and talked about recovery and the Kentucky Derby.  I got home pretty late because it’s a long drive.  What happened in that room?  What is that about?  I mean its obviously an A.A. Big Book meeting.  Could it be something more?
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