Greetings from Promontory C.F. I’d like to share a memory from 20 years ago when I first joined A.A. I’m 42 now, in prison and in a program that is designed to give men and women courage and strength to be humble and honest. So, here is my memory…
I was in the Army stationed at the 812th Military Police Co. near my hometown in the NYC area. I was in my early 20’s when my company commander ordered me to A.A. “What did he know?” I thought. My first speaker meeting as a member (I attended years before with my alcoholic mother) was while overseas. Here’s what I heard and saw. Picture a handsome middle aged sophisticated banker, whose countenance was strong. He told us that he recently went to see his wife and daughter who he deeply missed and loved unimaginably. He told us solemnly that he hadn’t been to “their place” in a while and had been avoiding talking to them for a long time. He said it gives him incredible anxiety to speak to them “on their turf” and he always fumbles with words. Upon entering their place he noticed the grass was high and the flowers were dead. The place looked in disarray. Having a burst of energy he cleaned up and felt good after. Then, reluctantly he decided it was again time to tell them both how much he loved them and how sad it makes him everyday to know his drinking was so destructive, and that he can’t sleep or eat sometimes. The banker told his family he was sorry. So sorry. He cried his eyes out, poured his soul upon them. They were silent. And my alcoholic friends, they always will be.
They were silent because he killed them in a DWI accident. He was drunk. He lived. They did not. “Their place” is a small quaint cemetery with no caretaker. They originally had a pauper’s funeral, for he was in jail at the time awaiting a 10 year sentence in prison. He did his time. When I heard this story I cried like he did that day, along with everyone there, but guess what? I still had 16 years of off and on drinking to do. This disease is cunning, is it not?
While I do my time for identity fraud, I remember that man. That story. I still mourn for them as well. As well as what I was, a drunk.