Saturday, November 13, 2010

And yet more fellowship...

My group invited me and another member, a friend, to go to this brunch this morning. I was looking forward to going to a brunch with my friend, but hadn't really given it much thought beyond that. As we arrived, I started thinking of people I might see there, and hoped they would be there.

When I walked into that room, it was like a dream, a sober fellowship dream. I saw people I didn't even know were alive or sober (let alone both together at the same time!) as well as people who have been favorites of mine for years. We got to sit at the same table with the man who took me to my first meeting. I got to see a man who was my boyfriend for many years... he won a centerpiece from his table, which he gave to me on his way out the door. It may not be pretty, but I will probably keep it forever, just because my dear old friend and old love gave it to me. I got to see so many people I love and have known for so long. It is such a comfort and a joy.

My friend turned to me at one point and asked me if I had ever been in a room so full of people so grateful to be alive. I hadn't thought about it that way, but when I did, I really stopped to ponder this. This room full of mostly older people - all happy and smiling - and somewhat boisterously greeting one another. Lots of hugs and kisses and warm, warm greetings. We are not only grateful to be alive ourselves, but we are grateful for each others' lives. And that is rare indeed!

Oh, it was a grand day.

Sometimes one or two people have gotten on my case for "bragging" about how long I have been sober. I don't think I do that. I seldom say how long it has been. I virtually never try to come off as someone with all the answers for anyone else. Therefore, on occasion, people used to come by and give me advice about how to stay sober for a day or a week - that is why I put my sobriety date in my header.

Sometimes I do talk about it though. Because sometimes I think it is important for people who are early in sobriety to hear about how much people who have been sober for a while value those memories and friendships. It seems to me that some of the newer people don't hang out as much as we did, and they are missing out on so much. We had so much fun - back then, and still now. Those relationships mean the world to me.

One time I was in a meeting with a new guy and a man celebrating 30 some years of sobriety. The 30 year guy said to the new guy "I envy you the journey." The new guy was dumbfounded because he envied the long term sobriety. But if you have long term sobriety, you have gotten it by long experience, really, most of it good. I wouldn't want to have missed a minute of it.

Please cherish each moment. Even if you think it sucks. It is a precious gift.

We get this life to live - each moment of it. Wow.

Thank you God.


Syd said...

Just being sober for as long as you is a gift IMO. I am glad that you had such a fine day.

dAAve said...

Earlier this year, I was in a room with many sober people. The Alamodome in San Antonio. LOL

I like the idea of knowing people's sobriety date (for some reason). I just figure that all those sober years means you have had the chance to experience more sober situations than I.

Carverlane said...

I am cherishing it! And I never get tired of reading about your gratitude.

Anonymous said...

Reading this post makes me want to continue to strive to remain sober. I enjoy hearing from "old timers"... it gives me hope that someday I too will be at peace with everything.

Linda Myers said...

I was in the Alamodome too. Remember all those old-timers in the middle? We were all sitting down and they were still standing.

Andrew said...

You are doing great. I love to hear
of it here.

Right here and right now.

PJ said...

I appreciate knowing that you have been sober many days (years) longer than I have. When I first found this online community of recovery, I was NOT yet sober. Your experience, strength and hope gave me HOPE that one day, too, I might finally get it and begin the journey of recovery. Thank God, I now have 3 and a half years. You are a big part of that. xo, PJ

Findon said...

Glad you had a good meeting Mary. It is old timers like you that I draw inspiration from. many thanks

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

Great reflection.

I might have been one running around giving advice to everyone. Full of the spirit of AA and wanting everyone to have what I have DAMN IT! LOL, I'm learning over time and a great deal of ego deflation, that they do.

The fellowship of longtimers has been very patient and tolerant as we "I", the newcoming whipper snapper with all the answers, grow and become more comfortable in "I don't know" and "God does."

I'm grateful, so grateful for you today! Thank you!

AnyEdge said...

I get jealous of the people who are sober. I also delight in telling them: "Wow, you got sober when I was in third grade!"

AnyEdge said...

I meant 'long time sober' of course.