The Coronavirus pandemic was a hard time for the Alcoholics Anonymous community. One of the experts at the meeting talks of how hugs and handshakes were completely wiped out from the meetings during the virus invasion.
For example, in an AA meeting in Florida, usually members hug a person who has reached a milestone of 30, 60, or 90 days without alcohol. However, during the pandemic, one of the leaders of the group handed out small medallions through gloved hands and from a distance of six feet. The Indian style “Namaste” had become the norm then.
AA is always open, no matter what
The little example mentioned above shows the dedication of AA towards its group members. No matter what happens on planet Earth, AA’s doors are open.
Groups like AA are needed more in times like the pandemic, which can be stressful for recovering addicts. The stress and the anxiety that came with the pandemic situation, lockdowns, and its repercussions were enough to send a recovering person swirling down into depression.
However, one admirable thing was that most of the recovering addicts, who participated in AA meetings regularly (online) during the pandemic, were able to sail through the Covid storm and come out as sober as possible.
Here’s what members say:
“That was the hardest time,” remarks one of the AA members, who refuses to be named to keep the anonymity. “When every gathering and event was getting canceled we continued to gather online and encourage each other to stay put.”
Another member adds, “Merely looking at the social media was a trigger because people began posting pictures of themselves locked down at homes with bottles of spirits to keep them company. We wondered what would happen to our sobriety!”
Dangers of isolation
The dangers of isolation are well-known to a recovering addict. When you are recovering, isolation can trigger depression.
That’s the very reason experts recommend joining recovery groups, meetings, and other such programs. They keep you amongst sober people and constantly pump you with sobriety motivation.
Strength of AA
Thousands of recovering addicts kept to their AA norms during the pandemic. They respected the 12 traditions of AA, one of which talks about the welfare of each other.
Members stayed in touch with each other virtually or through the phone. They continued to “hold each other’s hands” virtually, if not really and kept each other motivated to move ahead in their sobriety path, irrespective of the circumstances.
Focus on goal
Focus is the key element in whatever you wish to achieve in life. This includes lifetime sobriety. Valuable things don’t come easy. Or you can say, things that don’t come to you easy are some of the most valuable ones!
Stay focused. If you ever feel like taking a U-turn, remember why you took the sobriety path in the first place. Remember the day when you frantically searched for “AA near me”.
Your sobriety is valuable. It is your prized possession. Keep it intact forever. You have achieved it through sheer determination, intense efforts, strong willpower, patience, consistency, and faith in yourselves and the Higher Power.