It is truly amazing to me how the fellowship of the Anonymous programs works. We are a group of people that will go to such great lengths for one another, for help, for support, for love, and kindness.
Last week I went to Los Angeles for research for my jewelry project. While there, I attended an NA meeting in Hollywood. I lived in Hollywood for almost a decade, and every time I go to LA I attend meetings. Saturday night in Malibu, early morning at the Log Cabin, and sometimes Hollywood AA off La Brea.
Before we left KC, my other half came across an NA conference coming up in Topeka over the weekend. One of the speakers happened to be from Hollywood. Through a couple of phone calls and text messages, all of a sudden we had a new friend to see in Hollywood. Jimmy directed us to a meeting on Wednesday night, he met us when we got there, gave hugs and a warm welcome, introduced us to some of his friends, and we settled in for a great speaker meeting with a great message. Little did I know how powerful Jimmy would be.
Fast forward a couple of days and we are back in KC. On Sunday we wanted to go to Topeka to hear Jimmy share his story. We were so grateful for his hospitality and kindness to us in LA, and of course wanted to extend support for him while he was in a strange land. So we did.
I think Jimmy spent about 75-90 minutes sharing his story. By the end, there wasn’t a dry eye in the whole place. Everyone was wiping their eyes and sniffling, and fighting back tears. And all I could think about was what a miracle this fellowship is. Jimmy is in a very painful place in his life, suffering great loss. And so much of what he shared, through his pain, was the support of this fellowship. He shared about his friend in the program in New York, dropping everything to fly across the country to be by his side. He talked about people in his home group supporting him and helping him through this time, and he talked about his friend who, at the drop of a hat, got on a plane and flew to Kansas with him, because he couldn’t make it by himself.
And through this great loss, through tears of horrific pain, he shared about having 16 years clean and not having the desire to use. He talked about his sponsor helping him through this time, and he talked about his great grand-sponsor celebrating 50 years clean who has been a part of NA since it’s very beginning.
I had no idea how powerful Jimmy’s message was going to be that day, I had no idea the pain he was smiling through when he greeted us in Los Angeles. And through everything he has going on in his life, he still took the time to reach out to us, to guide us, and to welcome us.
This, my friends, is fellowship. I have never been more proud to be a part of something, and I have never had such great gratitude in my life. What a blessing that this is where my journey has brought me. Thank you to all of us that share in this fellowship, and thank you to everyone who puts the fellowship above our personal pain, and allows the fellowship to love us and care for us. Thank you Bill W.