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A Summary

My Home Group is a Friday Step Meeting where we read each Step out of the (CAL) Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions (12&12) book. I always hear a new nugget of experience at each Step when we read these Steps through again and again, due to the fact that I continue to change, grow and always in a slightly different mindset the next time we read a Step.

Step Twelve in the 12&12 provides a fabulous summary of Steps One through Eleven before it goes on to talk about Step Twelve. This rings true for me and my experience of each of the Steps – encapsulating my journey from darkness to light, from hopelessness to a zest for living, from an old, dirty, obscured lens to a new pair of glasses showing clarity and colour. How could I not want to tell others of my new found programme for living?

With this Step, I still require guidance to take care, act appropriately, with humility, to be of service and remember our Traditions of anonymity and especially principles before personalities. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking and the only message I can pass on is my experience, strength and hope. I need to be careful not to enter into judgement, disinterest and ensure I treat everyone with respect and as my equal; I too am just an alcoholic trying to get and stay well!

Sponsorship is a blessing and a responsibility – I take Fellows through the Big Book exactly how I was shown, in addition to sharing my experience since going through the Steps. I ensure I ask for guidance from God/my Higher Power, my sponsor and other Fellows if I encounter a new situation. The promises do come true when we see others get well, connect with the God of their understanding and become alive with hope, happy and at peace: a priceless gift!

The Big Book says I need to give it away to keep it so I remind myself to share at meetings, introduce myself to newcomers and offer my phone number. Sometimes I can feel a resistance to do this but a quick reminder that AA has given me a second chance at life, one full of peace, freedom and joy with Fellows, especially my sponsor, who continue to give freely and for this I am eternally grateful. It works if you work it!

MICHELLE, Plymouth