One of the most precious moments of 2017 so far for me was being invited to one of our ladies’ AA meetings.
The road she has walked in life has been harder and filled with more obstacles and hurt than I will ever know. She goes to a different group around the city almost every weekday evening to keep herself true, and on January 12th she was celebrating four years of being sober. For this particular meeting, her Group of Hope (as it is called) were acknowledging and celebrating her immense achievement with words, singaras, and cake
Pip and I went along with her and had the privilege of sitting and listening to her friends and fellow addicts from all walks of life speak words of love, support, and congratulations over her. That evening, her smile and her husky laugh sung songs of both pride and victory in a way that couldn’t be silenced or wiped from her face.
I can say without a shadow of a doubt that walking into that AA meeting I have never felt so unconditionally accepted. Maybe that’s what the supposed misfits actually teach us, because if so, then I am listening.
Sometimes the greatest truths are the most simple ones—each of us was created for relationship; we need one another. One of my favourite writers and theologians, Father Gregory Boyle, says it beautifully in his book Tattoos on The Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion (incidentally, he is also a badass catholic priest who works in the badlands of Los Angeles and is the founder of Homeboy Industries... look ‘em up!)