May 26: Unconditional Love

Unconditional Love

I’m Sophie, an alcoholic. I’m grateful to A.A. and all I’ve found here, I’m learning more and more to put into practice our program so I can enjoy life and manage in tricky times without having to resort to alcohol or any mind altering substance.
I’ve noticed over the recent weeks and months lots of new ladies here seeking sobriety and trying out A.A. here online in Grow before potentially going along to face to face (f2) meetings – welcome! I hope you’re still here and reading, even if not able to share to the group yet!
My first meeting was a f2f meeting. For the first time in my life I felt understood. And the miracle was these were complete strangers who within minutes I felt they knew me better than my own family.
I was told “we’re not here to see through you, but to see you through”.
I came to know that special feeling of unity in A.A. meetings – of having survived the horrors of active alcoholism and the drinking life.
I have seen that it’s really true that alcohol is the great leveller, and that the equality that exists here amongst members is priceless.
I don’t have to dress a certain way, pray a certain way, eat certain foods, give my credit card details or even tell you my name to be accepted in A.A.
There are many qualities, or character assets, or behaviour that I see here in aa that I strive to have more of in my life – compassion, understanding, patience, forgiveness, unconditional love.
I’ve found meetings (online & f2f) are full of friends I haven’t met yet. I can’t possibly like everyone but I can learn from everyone.
I wasn’t full of confidence when I first started going to A.A. meetings but I’m glad I persevered especially in finding local ones that worked for me.
My whole recovery is online at the moment – I have two little children at home, and I live in a semi-rural area with good meetings few and far. It’s a big change for me but I’ve kept sobriety at number one priority and have women A.A. friends I talk to on the phone and meet up with. As my old sponsor says, do what works for me.
I’ve found true unconditional love here in these rooms, f2f and online. The warmth and the welcome, the women wanting to help by sharing their own experiences or stories.
Sponsorship has been an extension of this unconditional love too for me.
In the same way I’m encouraged to find meetings that work for me I’ve been encouraged to find a sponsor who I feel heard and loved by. It’s been my experience that I’ve needed loving direction rather than brow beating or a kick in the pants.
I love finding and getting to know women I connect with and when that relationship can grow into sponsor-sponsored-sponsee I’ve found for me it’s a way to really get deep with this program and the spiritual tools and self discovery.
For me a sponsor has always been a woman in A.A. who is more experienced in the program than me, who I can talk (or write) to, (I’ve had one or two I’ve been scared of and couldn’t meet their expectations so they just weren’t for me) and who I can see living the program and who I’m inspired by.
Thank you for being here. Thank you for being part of my sobriety journey, and for celebrating last Friday my 19th A.A. birthday. Special times and I wish I could share cake and candles with all of you in person!!
Please join in the meeting if you’d like, on the topic of unconditional love, how you may have found this through sponsorship or meetings or some other way, or on any of the other qualities that you may be learning to practice through our 12 steps, or share on what you need to.